*The following is excerpted from an online article posted on MedicalXpress.
University at Buffalo School of Nursing researchers have found a”significant association” between alcohol or marijuana use and insufficient sleep among high school students.
The study, published earlier this year in the Journal of School Nursing, tested a nationally represented sample of high school students and found a close association between using substances including cigarettes, electronic vapor, alcohol and marijuana, and experiencing insufficient sleep.
“Substance use, especially alcohol and marijuana use, may increase the risk of having insufficient sleep on school nights,” says Misol Kwon, a Ph.D. student who was the lead researcher for the study, “Association Between Substance Use and Insufficient Sleep in U.S. High School Students.”
The association between marijuana use and insufficient sleep is especially strong for male and younger students, according to Kwon.
“Younger students suffer more from insufficient sleep when using marijuana,” she says.
“This is a major public health concern, as having insufficient sleep is associated with negative physical and mental health outcomes, increased risk of injuries and behavioral problems, including substance use and abuse,” the study says.
Researchers also believe the relationship between substance abuse and insufficient sleep can be “bi-directional,” meaning those with sleep disturbances also have higher risks of substance abuse.
“This can lead to a vicious cycle of increased risk of the worsening of health outcomes in adolescents,” says Kwon.