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activities. Discourage stimulating
activities - including vigorous
exercise, loud music, video games,
television, computer use and text
messaging - an hour or two before
Know when to unplug.
Take the
TV out of your teen’s room, or keep it
off at night. The same goes for your
teen’s cellphone, computer and other
electronic gadgets.
Sleeping pills and other medications
generally aren’t recommended. For
many teens, lifestyle changes can
effectively improve sleep.
Is it something else?
In some cases, excessive daytime
sleepiness can be a sign of something
more than a problem with your teen’s
internal clock. Other problems can
Medication side effects.
medications - including over-the-
counter cold and allergy medications
and prescription medications to treat
depression and attention-defcit/
hyperactivity disorder - can disrupt
Insomnia or biological clock
If your teen has trouble
falling asleep or staying asleep, he or
she is likely to struggle with daytime
Sleeping too much
or too little is a common sign of
Obstructive sleep apnea.
throat muscles fall slack during sleep,
they stop air from moving freely
through the nose and windpipe. This
can interfere with breathing and
disrupt sleep. You might notice loud
snoring or intermittent pauses in
breathing, often followed by snorting
and more snoring.
Restless legs syndrome.
condition causes a “creepy” sensation
in the legs and an irresistible urge to
move the legs, usually shortly after
going to bed. The discomfort and
movement can interrupt sleep.
Sudden daytime sleep,
usually for only short periods of
time, can be a sign of narcolepsy.
Narcoleptic episodes can occur at
any time — even in the middle of
a conversation. Sudden attacks of
muscle weakness in response to
emotions such as laughter, anger or
surprise are possible, too.
If you’re concerned about your teen’s
daytime sleepiness or sleep habits,
contact his or her doctor. If your teen is
depressed or has a sleep disorder, proper
treatment can be the key to a good
night’s sleep.
Jan/Feb 2012