Smartphones, Tablets Sabotaging Teens' Sleep

From Drugs.com - October 20, 2017

Smartphones, Tablets Sabotaging Teens' Sleep

FRIDAY, Oct. 20, 2017 -- Teens sleep less than they used to, sacrificing shuteye to spend more time on their phones and tablets.

Experts say teens need at least nine hours of sleep a night to be engaged and productive during the day. Anything less can cause daytime sleepiness and interfere with school or daily activities.

Faced with an array of tempting distractions, how much sleep are today's teens actually getting? To find out, researchers analyzed a pair of long-term, national surveys of more than 360,000 eighth- through 12th-graders.

One survey asked eighth-, 10th- and 12th-graders how often they got at least seven hours of shuteye. The other asked high school students how long they slept on a typical school night.

In 2015, 4 out of 10 teens slept less than seven hours a night. That's up 58 percent since 1991 and 17 percent more than in 2009 when smartphone use became more mainstream, the researchers said.

"Teens' sleep began to shorten just as the majority started using smartphones. It's a very suspicious pattern," said study leader Jean Twenge, a psychology professor at San Diego State University.

The more time students reported spending online, the less sleep they got, according to the study published Oct. 19 in the journal Sleep Medicine.

Those who were online five hours a day were 50 percent more likely to be sleep-deprived than classmates who limited their daily time online to an hour.


Continue reading at Drugs.com »