Teenagers are renowned for sleeping in long after their mothers and alarm clocks have tried their best to shake them out of slumber. What’s up with these kids and their need to sleep till lunch?
If your teen is sleeping in late despite going to bed at a reasonable hour (any time up until 9.30pm) then you may have to cut them some slack. Teenagers are food and sleep devouring machines. The blame falls on their prolific physical growth as well as their less visible brain development.
You see, teens are busy growing diffuse connections that link their frontal lobes to the rest of their brains. The frontal lobes are a wonderful section of the brain that helps human beings make good decisions, show self-control and be able to regulate their behavior despite tough emotions. In situations where you think I really want to smack that guy in the face but instead don’t and choose rather to walk away, that is your frontal lobe at work.
These vital connections that turn a child’s brain into the brain of an adult are only made during sleep- particularly REM sleep- the sleep it is so hard to wake from. So, rather than waking your fifteen-year-old earlier to get his chores done before school, and fighting him for a full hour, you may want to give him more sleep and hope that as those connections grow he understands the benefit in waking up a little earlier and keeping his room tidy.
Sounds like a long shot? Why not give it a try and let us know how it goes.