Tired of Being Tired?

Not Getting Enough Sleep can Harm Health, School Work

Wolfcast Staff


Brody Bush

Walking through the halls or in classrooms, students are constantly catching up on their sleep.

Brody Bush, Reporter

Lack of sleep is a common problem among students and adults according to studies by the American Sleep Apnea Association (ASAA). They reported that 25 percent of adults report troubles sleeping 15 out of every 30 days. With high schoolers, the studies said that only 30 percent of students claim that they get the required eight to 10 hours of sleep every night. There are a little over 15 million high schoolers in America, meaning about eight million high school students lack sufficient sleep hours.

Cami Jenschke, human geography teacher and softball coach, said that students with better sleep are more successful.

“If you come in well rested, your attitude is better, you’re more alert, and you’re more likely to participate in class and do better,” Jenschke said. “I attribute their lack of participation and their lack of enthusiasm to a lack of sleep.”

There is no scientific answer as to why so many people do not get enough sleep, but Jenschke said that she has an idea of the biggest reason. 

 “I think the kids would blame it on homework, but I think that’s not always the case,” Jenschke said. “I think a lot of times, it’s a combination of poor time management on their behalf.” 

Jenschke said that she thinks students should be making a dent in their large amounts of homework during their daily 45 minute study hall period.

“I think DEN is a crucial piece to this puzzle, it’s almost an hour of your life you can have back after school, so I think it’s reasonable for kids to get their homework done,” Jenschke said. 

From a medical perspective, the key to getting more sleep may be more obvious. Nurse Tarajo Frost said that digital distractions often keep people awake.

I think if everyone got more sleep, then everything would look a whole lot more different.

— Nurse Tarajo Frost

“I think having a basic schedule that you stick to every night about your sleep time and the rituals that you go through to go to bed [are important],” Frost said.

Research from Cnet shows that television viewing, computer-game playing, internet use and other stimulating activities before going to bed will cause problems falling asleep.

“Shut off all your media stuff 90 minutes before you go to bed,” Frost said. “Before you go to sleep, pick up a good book and read. Seeing the blue lights on the computer screens stimulate the retina so that it can’t shut down and go to sleep right away.”

Studies from NIH said that getting sleep is necessary for everyday life, and can help fight off infection and prevent diabetes. A lack of sleep is also tied to heart disease, high blood pressure, obesity and in serious cases, death.

“As a nation, we are way distracted in a lot of parts in our lives, whether it be on our phones, whether it be playing a game before we go to bed, whether it be watching a TV show before we go to bed or binging on our Netflix before we go to bed,” Frost said. “All those things create a health hazard for us, because our basic premise of our health starts with our sleep. If we aren’t sleeping well, then the whole system breaks down. I think if everyone got more sleep, then everything would look a whole lot more different.”