Adolescence is the period where most teenagers are highly active when it comes to physical, mental and social development. This is also the time where most of their brain and body formation takes place. It is highly recommended that people who falls under this period are aware of the importance of sleep and how it will further their developments. Sleeping is the one of the most important source of energy and teenagers should be well oriented when it comes to achieving sleep hygiene. It will help them avoid unwanted illnesses that may cause by bad sleeping habits.
This paper will assess the importance of sleep hygiene as well as correcting improper sleep practices and how to achieve a good and healthy sleep. Defining Sleep Hygiene Sleep hygiene is defined as the behavior and practices done by people in order to perk up sleep. It also involves environmental reasons that may hinder one from getting the right sleep (Dement & Vaughan, 2000, p. 1). Most people are doing daily sleeping patterns that can make or break their sleeping habit. It is considered hygienic if it encourages good result (Deardorff, 2009).
On the other hand, it can be considered as a sleeping disorder if it generates sleeping disturbances and health problems. Sleeping hygiene is the observance of sensible guidelines that is effective enough in making sleep more restful. The results of good sleeping hygiene are mostly positive and eliminate sleeping disorders as early as teenage years. Restoring the energy of an individual is the main goal of sleep hygiene to make the body well prepared for the next day’s activities (Deardorff, 2009). Health Problems Associated Without Getting Proper Sleep
Poor sleeping hygiene causes several sleeping disorders that may hinder teenagers from having daytime alertness and mental stability. A teenager who experiences sleepiness during daytime indicates poor sleep hygiene. This can be caused by uncomfortable type of sleeping place, doing activities while close to sleeping schedule, stimulant usage, and improper sleep scheduling and thinking of problems before going to sleep. When a person does not get the right amount of sleep, he/she is prone of having insomnia. Insomnia is defined as a sleeping disorder that makes people awake even in the late hours of the night (WebMD, 2009).
It is associated with other things like thinking of so many problems before going to sleep or being stuck in stressful situations (Dement & Vaughan, 2000, p. 157). Another health problems associated with inadequate sleep are depression, panic attacks, and hyperactivity during the day (WebMD, 2009). A teenager who was not able to sleep well will wake up with feelings of irritability, restlessness and frustration (Dement & Vaughan, 2000, p. 160). Lesser sleep will also make the immune system weak and may lead to sickness like fever and flu (Dement & Vaughan, 2000, p. 15).
Loss in weight and malnutrition can also be caused by improper sleeping habits. How to Correct Poor Sleep Hygiene and Achieve a Healthy Sleep According to the website of Sleep Medicine Center at Cleveland (2009), sleep hygiene is divided into four general areas namely: Circadian Rhythm, psychological stressors, aging and use of stimulants (WebMD, 2009). Teenagers can correct poor sleeping hygiene by consciously following the Circadian Rhythm or the 24 hour cycle of sleep. This is done by proper timing of activities like allotting time for napping, exercise, exposure to sunlight and bed time (WebMD, 2009).
The next thing to do to correct poor sleep hygiene is by eliminating psychological stressors that can make a person suddenly awake in the middle of the night (WebMD, 2009). It is good not to think of problems and frustrating situations before going to sleep. Taking a hot bath first, drinking a glass of milk and meditating can help teenagers relax their mind and forget about the stresses of the day. Age is also a factor when it comes to sleep hygiene. For teenagers, lesser awakening happens during their sleep because they are not having many problems like people in their 40s (WebMD, 2009).
However the quality of sleep is also affected by the food that teenagers consume like too much caffeine and carbonated drinks. Lastly, stimulants can make or break the sleep hygiene. “It can increase can increase the number of times a person is awaken at night” and stays in the body for as long as 14 hours (WebMD, 2009). Since teenagers are prone to smoking and alcohol binging, it is strongly encouraged for them to avoid nicotine and alcoholic substance since those are stimulants that may keep a person awake. Making the bedroom a restful place to sleep is also the best way to attract a good night sleep (Deardorff, 2009).
Teenagers who will adhere to the aforementioned practices are guaranteed of healthier life style and a more fruitful day ahead. Reference: Deardorff, W. (2009). Practicing Good Sleep Hygiene. Spine Health Website Retrieve 5 June 2009 from: http://www. spine-health. com/wellness/sleep/practicing-good-sleep-hygiene Dement, W. & Vaughan, C. (2000). The Promise of Sleep. Published by Dell Publishing. WebMd (2009). Cognitive Behavioral Treatments for Sleep. Sleep Disorders Health Center Website, Retrieve 5 June 2009 from: http://www. webmd. com/sleep-disorders/behavioral-treatments