As time goes on, the evidence about sleep’s importance seems to be to be so compelling and overwhelming that it must be treated as a public health issue.
At the same time that scientists are coming up with more and more evidence about the harm done by lack of good quality sleep (for all age groups, sometimes in different ways) we see more and more evidence that ever more distracted people are sleeping less and less.
If parents understood that the quality and quantity of the sleep their child gets could play a bigger part in their life success than their choice of school, how much homework they do, how good they are at taking exams etc. – wouldn’t they take it more seriously.
In schools, you can sometimes see the evidence of those children who are operating from a position of sleep deprivation. Parents and children also need to understand that it’s not a simplistic thing where you can make up the deficit at the weekends!
Here’s an article that shares research on the potentially devastating impact of sleep deficit for children, where it’s caused by snoring, sleep apnea or other similar disorders;
That a child could have their academic achievements harmed by this is bad enough. However, I fear that this is one of the significant contributory factors in many diagnoses of ADHD, as well as potentially causing other psychological problems in childhood. Worse, I worry for children who are in sleep deficit for perfectly solvable reasons such as poor disciplines and routines in the home, inappropriate family lifestyle choices etc.
It’s time we all started taking sleep far more seriously.