Yet for most teens, this simply isn’t possible. On school days, it’s common for teens to be up by six a.m. so they can be in class by 7:30 a.m. And a nine p.m. bedtime may not be realistic.
As a result, many teens get two to three hours less sleep than they need. Still, you can help your teen get better sleep:
• See if he can adjust his afternoon schedule. If he is working after school, can he cut his hours? Is there an extracurricular activity he is willing to drop? Doing so may help him begin homework earlier. Then his late nights may be more relaxed, encouraging good sleep.
• Encourage him to stick to a bedtime. The body likes routine. Going to bed at 10 p.m. one night and one a.m. the next will throw off sleep patterns and may leave your teen exhausted.
• Urge him to stay away from coffee, tea and sodas, especially after noon. They contain caffeine, which can keep him up at night.
• Make a house rule that the TV, phone and computer are off limits for the last hour before bed. Instead, your teen can listen to soft music or read a book. Try to establish the same “wind-down” routine each night.
Copyright © Parent Institute