A lack of shut-eye can leave teenagers feeling listless, and experiencing an inability to sleep night after night can take a serious toll on their health. Insomnia might leave a teenager awake in bed for several hours or pacing the floors long into the night, waiting to fall asleep. Irritability, problems at work or school and the urge to fall asleep during the day can plague teenagers suffering from insomnia.
Between classes, relationships and obligations to family, your teenager might be under mounting levels of stress. Constant stress can also contribute to sleep troubles such as insomnia in teenagers, according to the Mayo Clinic. Finding ways to manage stress such as reducing work hours or cutting back on school-related activities might help. Teenagers might also need the help of a school counselor or another mental health professional to learn how to better manage stress. When stress is better managed, teenagers might find that insomnia is no longer a problem.
The drinks your teen consumes can have a major effect several hours later, which might result in restless nights. Teenagers should consume no more than 100 milligrams of caffeine per day, advises KidsHealth, a child development site. Energy drinks often contain more than 100 milligrams of caffeine, so checking the labels on those drinks and sodas can help teenagers avoid caffeine, which should improve their chances of falling asleep, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics. Limiting caffeine several hours before bed or avoiding it altogether is likely to reduce the symptoms of insomnia.
Your teenager's bedroom might not be complete without video game systems, computers, televisions and other glowing media. These sources of entertainment might also be the source of insomnia. Turn off the screens at least an hour before bedtime, according to KidsHealth. A warm bath before bed, along with keeping a standard bedtime schedule, can also reduce insomnia. Exercise during the day can also make sleeping at night more likely.
Some teenagers grow anxious when they are trying to fall asleep, which causes them to become more alert. Keeping positive and reassuring yourself that you will fall asleep is more likely to help you sleep, suggests KidsHealth. If life adjustments don't help, ask a doctor for more help, states the Mayo Clinic. Medications or lifestyle factors might be causing insomnia.