DALLAS, Texas. When teens make risky choices behind the wheel, they are more likely to suffer serious injuries or death. Teens’ brains are still developing, which can make them more likely to take risks. Furthermore, teens’ inexperience behind the wheel can make it more likely that when teens do take risks, they might be more likely to be involved in a crash. Yet, what can parents do to prevent their teens from taking unnecessary risks? For one, make sure your teen gets enough sleep.
According to CNN, scientists recently completed a study in which they found that teens who got less sleep were more likely to engage in risky driving behaviors like drinking and driving, drug use, and other unsafe behavior. How much sleep is enough? According to the study, teens who slept fewer than 6 hours each night were most at risk of engaging in risky behavior. These teens were three times more likely to have thought about suicide and they were four times more likely to attempt suicide.
Many teens might be at risk. The researchers found that as many as 70% of teens are getting fewer than 8 hours of sleep each night.
How much sleep do teens need? According to Johns Hopkins Medicine, teens need approximately 9.5 hours of sleep each night. Teens’ brains are still developing, which makes their sleep needs higher. Yet, as teens need more sleep, they may find themselves facing additional pressures from school, after school activities, and work. What can parents do to ensure that their teens get the sleep they need?
Encourage good sleeping habits by making sure that your teen’s schedule isn’t so full that he or she is falling asleep later and waking up earlier. Remind your teen that good performance in school, sports, and activities is linked to good sleep. Drowsy driving can be just as dangerous as drunk driving. Johns Hopkins Medicine suggests that parents tie teens’ driving privileges to their good sleep habits. Another way to promote good sleep habits is to confiscate the cell phone at the bedroom door. The light from your child’s cell phone can be impacting his or her ability to go to sleep.
Another way to promote better sleep habits is to speak up at PTA meetings and encourage your child’s school to have a later start time. School should start at around 8:30 a.m. ideally, but even later start times have been shown to be beneficial.
Teen driving can be nerve-wracking for parents. However, with proper planning and training, your teen can be a safe driver. Unfortunately, many accidents happen due to the negligence of other drivers on the road. If you or a loved one was hurt in a car accident due to another driver’s negligence, consider speaking to the Law Office of Robert Gregg, personal injury lawyers in Dallas, Texas. Our firm may be able to review your case and help you get the best possible outcome under the law. Visit us at http://www.gregginjury.com/ to learn more.
Law Offices of Robert Gregg
2024 Commerce Street, Suite B,
Dallas, TX 75201