Is Staying Up Late Upping Your Teen’s Risk for Substance Abuse?

It turns out that grogginess, excessive naps, and wearing PJs all day aren’t the only side effects that occur when teens don’t get enough sleep — a recently-released study connects teens’ poor sleep habits with more high-risk behavior, including drug and alcohol use.

Here’s what Kansas City parents need to know about how a good night’s sleep can affect their teen’s behaviors.

Better Sleep, Better Judgment? Teen Sleep Patterns & Substance Abuse

The EvidenceTeen Sleeping

The study, released in Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research, covered over 6,500 teens across the US from 1994 – 2002. Researchers looked at the teens’ drug and alcohol use as well as their sleep patterns.

They found that teens who slept poorly had problems with drug and alcohol use. Wanting to probe the link and establish more than correlation, they studied further and found that teens who experienced trouble sleeping at least once weekly were more likely to engage in risky behaviors including sexual conduct, binge drinking, and illegal prescription drug use.

When the sleep issues escalated, the behaviors did, too. Teens experiencing trouble sleeping every day were 33% more likely to engage in the risky behaviors mentioned above.

What Can Parents Do?

While it seems funny that enforcing a bed time could help prevent your teen from using drugs and alcohol, this study seems to support the notion. If parents pay more attention to their teens’ schedules and encourage healthier sleep habits, they can actually prevent substance abuse down the line. Better sleep may prevent your teen from abusing prescription drugs like Adderall. And if you know where your teen is at night, it’s less likely that they’re out with friends abusing drugs or alcohol!

Teen Drug Testing in Kansas City

Are you a Kansas City parent concerned about the possibility of your teen using drugs or alcohol? Test Smartly Labs of Kansas City provides teen drug testing for prescription medicationsynthetic drugs, and other commonly-abused drugs, as well as alcohol testing.

Call Test Smartly Labs of Kansas City today at (816) 875-0464 and get help with keeping your teen clean!


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