Teens need more sleep than you think. They may not like it but it’s vital for their everyday functioning; a lack of sleep can negatively impact mood, cognitive ability and academic performance!
Busy weekday schedules comprised of early rises to make it to school on time and after school activities, socialising AND squeezing homework or coursework in can make getting enough sleep hard. Compounded by living in the digital age, with social media calling 24-hours a day, studies have shown that teens are notorious for not achieving optimal sleep durations. The average teen snoozes for only 7 to 7 ¼ hours a night, which is below the recommended 9 to 9 ½ hours required for optimal development.
Aside from busy schedules, environment is one of the biggest contributing factors to how much sleep teens get. Here are 5 simple tweaks that you can make to your teens bedroom to help them wake up feeling refreshed and energised, instead of sleepy and grumpy:
Screen free zone
The light emitted from TV’s, specifically the ‘blue light’ is counterproductive to sleep. National Sleep Foundation research shows that the light suppresses melatonin, making it harder to sleep. Many devices emit a similar artificial light and can distract from sleep. It is best to keep your teens bedroom screen free and encourage them to wind down once bedtime arrives. Harsh light can hinder sleep, so it is best to keep all devices such as tablets and computers away from their bedroom.
Darker is better
The Sleep Foundation has shown that light, particularly artificial light can have a big impact on sleep. Try to make your teen’s bedroom as dark as possible. Consider blackout blinds to stop any unwanted light entering the room and ensure sleep remains uninterrupted.
A relaxing and peaceful bedroom space will help with the quality of sleep your teen is getting. A cluttered environment can cause unnecessary stress and worry as well as being distracting at bedtime. Between you and your teen, place a high importance on keeping the room clutter free. Investing in good storage can help by making sure everything has a home. If you are tight on space, you may wish to consider cabin beds for sale from Room to Grow which include integrated storage space, from wardrobes to shelves, that will help with de-cluttering efforts!
Keep it cool and comfortable
NHS England suggest that the ideal temperature for sleep is between 18 and 24°C, being too hot can hinder sleep. When selecting bed linen, don’t just look for the trendiest design; stay clear of synthetic materials as these are more likely to trap moisture, making it warm and difficult to sleep. Instead, opt for quality materials such as cotton and linen which absorb moisture, keeping your teen cool and comfortable throughout the night.
Don’t cut corners on mattresses and pillows
Unsurprisingly, your teens mattress and pillow play a big role in the quality of their sleep. The Better Sleep Council recommend changing your mattress every 7-10 years so it is likely your teen will be needing a new mattress during their early teens. If you find them waking up complaining of aches and pains, it could be time to replace the mattress. Let them help in the process of choosing one as after all they are the one sleeping on it. Same goes for pillows; let your teen test the pillow and see what they prefer. What’s comfortable to you may not be comfortable for them, after all.
The above 5 tips will give your teen the best possible chance of a long, quality nights sleep, helping them to wake up feeling energised and refreshed, ready to attack the school day with a positive outlook and full concentration!