Wednesday, 9 April 2008

A few days ago I read an interesting article in The Star.

The title of the article was 'Study: Teens are out of sync - Ambient light, computers among causes for lack of sleep and depression'.

Scientists have confirmed what parents of teenagers have always suspected: adolescents are out of sync with the rest of the world.

That really caught my attention, since I'm a teen. So I read on.

When hormonal changes kick in at the start of adolescence, young people start to stay up later and - given the chance - wake up later too.

For the last two days, I've been sleeping at a later time. Much, much later than a few years ago.

Professor Suzanne Warner, a professor in Australia, said:

The key is melatonin, a hormone that signals to the body that it needs rest and sleep. In teenagers entering puberty, it is released later and later in the evening.

Ambient light tends to minimise the amount of melatonin secreted, and the constant use of computers could keep adolescents up past their natural bedtime, even after lights are out.

Previous research has shown that nine hours is the optimal amount of sleep time for teenagers.

I counted how long I slept each day. On school days it's about six to seven hours, weekends eight. I've never slept for more than nine hours.

So Mum and Dad, don't blame me for sleeping late; it's just my hormones. =)
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