Sleep experts have urged UAE schools to start late in the morning, to ensure teenagers get enough rest. Professor Mary Carskadon, a leading Sleep Expert from Brown University, visited UAE this week to highlight the benefits of late school timing.
According to Prof. Carskadon, most teenagers are building up, “a sleep debt night after night,” affecting their mood, ability to think and perform, as well as behavior.
We have children who are falling asleep in class, struggling to learn, performing poorly in sports, and having trouble getting along with others due to sleep deprivation.
Teenagers need a minimum of 9 hours of sleep to function properly. Professor Carskadon’s research shows that most teenagers only get around 7-7.5 hours of sleep each night, and many sleep a lot less on school nights.
She warned that sleep-deprived teenagers can display symptoms similar to narcolepsy, an uncontrollable urge to sleep.
Prof. Carskadon revealed these findings at a panel discussion hosted by the University of Birmingham Dubai, Jumeira Baccalaureate School, and Nurture2Sleep, a Dubai-based sleep consultancy.