How Sleep Helps Teens Deal with Social Stress

*The following is excerpted from an online article posted on MedicalXpress.

A new Michigan State University study found that a good night’s sleep does adolescents good—beyond helping them stay awake in class. Adequate sleep can help teens navigate challenging social situations.

The study, which focused on ninth-grade students, found that adequate sleep allowed students to cope with discrimination and challenges associated with ethnic or racial bias. It also helps them problem-solve more effectively and seek peer support when faced with hardships.

“Findings of this study have important implications,” said Yijie Wang, assistant professor of human development and family studies at MSU. “Understanding how sleep helps adolescents negotiate social challenges may consequently elucidate how promoting sleep may improve adolescent adjustment during high school and beyond.”

Published in Child Development, this is the first study to identify the timing in which sleep helps with adolescents cope with stress.

Compared to adults and children, high school students are particularly at risk for insufficient sleep due to early school times, busy schedules and increased social stressors. The transition to high school also introduces more diversity to their social environment and relationships.

Via this study, Wang and co-author Tiffany Yip of Fordham University wanted to pinpoint the effect sleep has on coping with discrimination. They found that if a teen has a good night of sleep, they are able to cope with harsh experiences—like discrimination—better.

Participants in the study wore an actigraphy watch, which tracked physical activities in one-minute intervals and determined their sleep-wake state, every day for two weeks. The students were also asked to complete a survey each day before bed, reporting their daytime experiences such as ethnic or racial discrimination, how they responded to stress and their psychological well-being.

A surprising finding in the study was that peers, not parents, were the immediate support that helps adolescents cope with discrimination.

Source: MedicalXpress
https://medicalxpress.com/news/2020-02-teens-social-stress.html

Help us reach the next generation of families

Donate
Back to Top
[reposted by] Jim Liebelt

[reposted by] Jim Liebelt

Jim is Senior Writer, Editor and Researcher for HomeWord. Jim has over 35 years of experience as a youth and family ministry specialist, having served over the years as a pastor, author, consultant, mentor, trainer, college instructor, and speaker. Jim’s HomeWord culture blog also appears on Crosswalk.com and Religiontoday.com. Jim and his wife Jenny live in Quincy, MA.

  • About HomeWord

    HomeWord helps families succeed by creating Biblical resources that build strong marriages, confident parents, empowered kids and healthy leaders. Founded by Jim Burns, HomeWord seeks to advance the work of God in the world by educating, equipping, and encouraging parents and churches. Learn More »

  • Support Our Mission

    HomeWord is non-profit, donor supported ministry. If you would like to partner with HomeWord in our effort to help more parents and families you can make a donation. Your investment will allow us to expand this ministry by offering more resources to families and churches in need.

  • Contact Information

    • HomeWord
      PO Box 1600
      San Juan Capistrano, CA
      92693

    • Send us an email

    • 800-397-9725
      (M-F: 8:30am-5pm PST)

Close