Teens who stay up late are
more likely to have lower grades and more emotional problems, a new study
Researchers analysed data
from 2 700 US teens, aged 13 to 18. Of those, 30% said they went to bed later
than 11.30 p.m. on school nights and 1:30 a.m. in the summer.
By the time they graduated
from high school, the teens who stayed up late during the school year had lower
GPA scores and were more likely to have emotional problems than those with
earlier bedtimes, the University of California, Berkeley, team found.
Going to bed late in the
summer did not appear to affect school performance, but there was an
association between later summer bedtimes and emotional problems in young
adulthood, according to the study published online in the Journal of
The researchers said their
findings support later middle and high school morning start times. While the
study found an association between lack of sleep and lower grades, it did not
prove a cause-and-effect relationship.
busy after-school schedules and the desire to finally have free time at the end
of the day to connect with friends on the phone or online make this problem
even more challenging," study author Lauren Asarnow, a graduate student in
UC Berkeley's sleep and mood research clinic, said in a university news
On a positive note, the
findings highlight how healthy sleep habits provide academic and emotional
benefits for teens.
"The good news is that
sleep behaviour is highly modifiable with the right support," Asarnow
KidsHealth.org has more
about teens and sleep.