The Importance of Sleep

Rachel McLaughlin, Editor

When I first wake up in the morning, I immediately think of the next time I am going to be able to go back to sleep. I try to make up a schedule during the day so that I can somehow nap before practice starts, or I think maybe if I get home fast enough I could nap before dinner so that it won’t change when I actually go to bed after getting my homework done. Only 15% of teens get the correct amount of sleep that is necessary to get through the day focused and awake. Teens are supposed to get around 8-10 hours of sleep each night. On average, high school students said that on a good night they usually only reach up to 6 or 7 hours of sleep.

Turns out many people share this problem. Not being able to sleep well, or at all, is a common issue for students across the globe. In fact, guess who is one of the most sleep-deprived populations? That’s right, it’s high school students! Students have a lot going on with classes, exams, and assignments. If you add extracurricular activities like sport or working a part-time job then it only adds to the stress. Unfortunately, without regular and peaceful sleep the stress can increase and it can affect a number of aspects of your life.

Sleep is directly correlated to our learning process. At night the brain takes information that we learn through the day and stores it in our minds. Without sleep, the brain can’t process what you have learned and it is not efficiently stored in your long-term memory.

The majority of students at TG say that the main reason they miss out on a good amount of sleep is because of homework. A lot of teachers plan tests at the end of the week, causing students to have to study for multiple tests Wednesday and Thursday night. The bad thing is, all this studying will go to waste if they don’t get the proper sleep they need after they are done studying.

As students, a lack of sleep can have a large effect on our ability to learn during the day. A tired mind finds it harder to concentrate in class, and skipping class because of tiredness can become a problem. Without the correct amount of sleep, students have a harder time retaining the information that they have learned.These low energy levels also result in decreases in productivity and efficiency. This can be really difficult for an overwhelmed student. Especially during busy periods of exams and finals. Less sleep can also weaken your immune system. Becoming ill when you need to get a lot of work done or attend a lot of classes can really impact your studies. You can keep your immune system healthy by giving your body a good amount of rest at night. By getting more sleep, you are guaranteed to have a healthier body, mind, and overall a more refreshed and awake lifestyle.

Although there are remedies to this sleep deprivation problem. It most likely will not be solved and in full effect. Students can’t help that there isn’t enough time for quality sleep. Now more than ever, sports are becoming more competitive and demanding. Practices, competitions, and games might go until ten at night. If this game is on a night that a student has to study for a test, that means this student may be up until midnight at the earliest. There is not much the student can do about this, sleep has become lowest on the priority list. That is why the loss of sleep is just going to keep getting worse and worse.