Sleep problems in teens can warn of complications related to alcohol

Sleep problems in teens can warn of complications related to alcoholIt is estimated that one in ten teenagers has trouble falling asleep or staying asleep almost every day, or every day.

Sleep problems and sleeping hours can predict a series of future complications, including excessive consumption of alcohol, driving under the influence of alcohol and sexual risk behavior in a nationally representative sample.

Sleeping difficulties and lack of sleep are common among young Americans and previous investigations showed that lack of sleep can predict problems related to alcohol and drug use by adolescents and young adults in high-risk samples.

It is estimated that approximately one in ten teenagers has trouble falling asleep or staying asleep almost every day, or every day for the last year.

Among normal adults, sleep problems and insomnia predict the onset of alcohol a year later and an increased risk of any illicit use disorder and nicotine dependence 3.5 years after drugs. As for adult alcoholics treated for alcohol dependence, people with insomnia at baseline analysis were more likely to relapse into alcohol. The association between lack of sleep and substance use has also been seen in younger age groups.

Fatigue during childhood predicted lower response inhibition in adolescence, which in turn indicates the number of illicit drugs to be consumed in adulthood. Fatigue in childhood also directly determined the presence of excessive consumption of alcohol, fainting, driving after drinking alcohol and the number of alcohol problems for life at the beginning of adulthood.

The purpose of this investigation was to examine whether sleep difficulties and sleep prospectively predict more severe substance-related problems including excessive consumption of alcohol, driving under the influence of alcohol and sexual risk behavior.

Analyzed data collected through interviews and questionnaires to 6,504 adolescents (52 percent girls and 48 percent boys) participating in the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health and collected data during three waves 1994-1995, 1996 and 2001 -2002.

Sleeping trouble in the first wave significantly predicted interpersonal problems related to alcohol, excessive alcohol consumption, binge drinking, driving under the influence of alcohol, reach a sexual situation drink that repent lately, and consume any illicit drug and drug-related problems in the second wave. Substance-related problems such as excessive consumption of alcohol, driving under the influence of alcohol and sexual risk behavior are more important than others because of their association with reckless driving, car accidents, injuries physical and even death, as well as the risk of STDs and unwanted pregnancies.

The rate of sleep problems in this sample of adolescents is quite similar to that of adults – 10 percent chronic insomnia and 30 percent of occasional sleeplessness, indicating the underlying biological basis of insomnia. Moreover, the consequences of sleep difficulties and inadequate sleep when added to alcohol or other substances can affect both medical and behavioral areas, such as a car accident or reducing future job opportunities for losing involvement in training.

Parents can play an important role in sleep habits of adolescents. Parents need to know the schedules, sleep patterns and habits of their children. If children have difficulty falling asleep or poor sleep hygiene, it is important that parents talk with them and find out the factors that may be causing problems. Parents could explain the importance of sleep for their children, for example, how sleep can affect brain development and, therefore, self-control and behavior and could help their children maintain a schedule – regular sleep and monitoringl the activities of children before bedtime, for example, no video games or text messages after a certain hour at night.

In this sense that parents monitor the health of your teenager’s dream, may be two different issues: difficulty sleeping and lack of sleep. Future research will answer how both issues can affect brain mechanisms, which in turn influence control and cognitive and behavioral processes.