Editorial: Students Struggle With Sleep

Sleep– It is the most important nutrient to an aware and healthy mind.

Art By Lily Newcomb

However, the majority of high school students seem to find a deficit in the amount of time they sleep, which leads to many health and psychological problems.

For most students at OHS,  this is a feeling they can sympathize with.

In general, the average OHS student has difficulties falling asleep at what is considered a “reasonable” time.

Studies show that student’s need anywhere from eight-and-a-half to nine-and-a-half hours of sleep to maintain a healthy mind and to promote growth.

It’s easy to say “just go to sleep earlier,” but when you have plenty of homework, several honors or AP classes, a social life and maybe even some time to yourself, the clock is bound to strike 2:00 a.m. when you’re climbing into bed.

Of course, to combat the sleepiness, teens turn to caffeine to reboot their systems. But with that temporary fix, comes permanent reliance on coffee and energy drinks.

Caffeine is defined as a drug because it affects the nervous system and elevates mood. However, it can breed addiction in our population’s youth.

In addition, after consuming caffeine consistently and then stopping, those who use it have to deal with the after effects like headaches and fatigue.

This is no good for cognitive awareness, either.

If teens don’t get enough sleep, their brain doesn’t have enough time to develop because the primary time for that occurs during deep sleep.

Our recommendation?

Throw out the current school schedule, replace it with something that science (that subject your snoozing in) has approved of: a later starting time, even if that means we get out of class later.

As a result poor sleep, grades suffer, focusing during tests becomes difficult and from what we’ve seen, doing homework will take longer to complete and probably won’t get you an A.

Not only does a lack of sleep affect our school work, but it can also increase a student’s chance of developing skin problems, aggressive behavior and even overeating, not to mention car accidents.

More and more teenagers are driving to school each day, and that means more and more teens are  waking up in the early hours of the morning.

This can lead to poor judgement on the road.

Not only is the schedule increasing the risks of a car accident, it is putting pedestrians in danger.

So there you have it– Bad, Worse, and worser than that.

These are the symptoms of a lack of sleep in a single sentence.

If students could have a few more hours of sleep before going off to school, we could all have a smoother ride in class, whether that means the actual drive, preparation or attention we are physically capable of giving.

Regardless of how insignificant it may seem to some, even a little bit more sleep can do wonders for students’ attitude.

Don’t fool yourself; if you’re not getting enough sleep, you’re most likely not doing your best work.

So we’re asking the school district to take a look at the struggles this early schedule has provided OHS students, and we’re also asking them to wake up.