Is Your Teen Just A Snore, Or Is There Something Seriously Wrong?

Teens and sleep go together like chalk and cheese. In fact, by the time your kids reach 14+, they may well start to sleep for ten or more hours a night. There’s nothing unusual about that, and it’s mostly to do with hormonal swings, circadian rhythms, and all that growing. What many parents fail to realize is that there can be such a thing as too much sleep, even where grumpy teens are concerned. 

Sadly, sleep can be as much a sign of something wrong as it is a healthy indicator of a growing child. Of course, reasons for excessive snooze times vary depending on a teen’s personality, weekly workload, and more. But, some of the more worrying reasons they might be keeping those curtains closed include - 

Overload
Believe it or not, a seeming excess of laziness can be a warning sign that your teen is taking on too much, especially if it centers around weekends. Remember that those teen years involve significant educational pressure and stress. Your teen may have taken on too many after school clubs, or be up all hours with essays and assignments. This could lead them to levels of exhaustion you can only imagine. Luckily, this is an easy enough issue to diagnose, as you’ll likely see your teen working themselves to the bone first-hand. In this instance, encouraging them to drop unnecessary additional credits or even going over their timetable with their teachers could be best. 


Illness
In many cases, tiredness is the body’s way of fighting physical illness. Lasting conditions like anemia and chronic pain can both lead to excessive sleep patterns. Equally, Lyme disease or similar that your teen could have fallen foul to in that field with their mates can lead to extreme fatigue. Usually, such illnesses are accompanied by other symptoms, but it might be worth booking your teen a doctor’s appointment to assess the issue. Physiotherapy or hyperthermia induction therapy for Lyme could also help to boost your teen’s immune system. That alone could lend them much higher energy levels moving forward.

Mental struggles
An average of 1 in 5 young people experience mental illness at some stage, so it’s also vital to consider this possibility. Problems like depression, in particular, can either increase or decrease the amount of sleep your teen’s getting. Equally, anxiety-based insomnia could lead them to sleep during the daytime. These issues are perhaps the hardest of all to spot, but again, they’re rarely the only evident symptoms. Look out for other warning signs, including a lack of appetite, interest, or engagement. Be sure, too, to talk to your teen about how they’re feeling, and help them seek help if they’re not coping too well right now.


Does this mean you need to enter panic mode because your teenager spends most of their free days in bed? Obviously not. But, you might want to think about the reasons behind their bed-bound nature, and whether there’s anything you can do to give them a boost.