Effects of Sleep Deprivation on Teens and Young Adults

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It had been a long week at school. I arrive on Friday morning feeling awful. Thankfully, there were only seven more dreadful hours until I was done. The second the 8th period bell rang, I quickly grabbed my belongings from my locker and got into the comfort of my car. I was driving with the heat on medium, the music on low volume, and both hands on the steering wheel. The next thing I know, I felt a heavy thump as my car had drifted into the rear driver-side door of a Toyota Sienna in the lane to my left. I had dozed off. It was only when I saw the two young children in the back of the minivan that I realized this situation could have been a whole lot worse. Not to mention that this was my fourth car accident since getting my license, and it wouldn't be my last one either. According to a 1998 study by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, drowsiness causes about 100,000 car crashes each year resulting in 1,500 deaths, 50% of which are kids ages of 15 to 24… [in addition,] teens require about nine-and-a-half hours of sleep a night” (Mara, 1998). Sleep deprivation, although increasingly prevalent amongst teens and young adults, is detrimental to their life in an array of aspects ranging from driving abilities to psychological health.
In today’s busy society, high school students are catching less sleep than ever before. Many teens are involved in extracurricular activities such as athletics, theater, clubs, jobs, and maintaining an overactive social life. All of these tasks, in addition to homework and family time, often result in late nights. Consistently going to bed too late is the direct cause of sleep deprivation, and depriving a person’s brain of sleep can bring on some austere side effects. If fact, the part of...

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.... If we can do that, teens and young adults will be smarter, sharper, healthier, and much, much more likely to succeed.

Works Cited

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Mara, J. (1998). Drowsy driving and automobile crashes. National Highway Traffic Safety
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