Friday, February 24, 2006

Increased Health Risks For Insomniatic Teens

Researchers at RTI International studied over 1,000 13-16 year olds and discovered almost 11 percent suffered from insomnia. Onset for this typically started at 11 years old. The study found that this appears to increase the risks of ADHD symptoms, psychiatric disorders, and other health problems. They found insomnia to be a common chronic problem among adolescents. Insomnia reduces cognitive function and performance in teens and it also increases the risk for depression and substance abuse. Adolescents require more sleep than anyone. Without it, they are at risk of serious health issues.
The study also found that girls were twice as likely as boys to develop insomnia after beginning menstruation. Also, more than half of the teens suffering from insomnia also suffer from a psychiatric disorder. For a majority of the teens, 88 percent were potential chronic sufferers. Due to the high prevalence of insomnia, it not only impacts daytime functioning, but it increases the possibility of other psychiatric disorders. Therefore, many feel that we need to rethink the needs of teens and their schedules. The treatment and prevention need to be important priorities for adolescent health.

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