Effects of Sleep, Extracurricular Activities, and Lessons on Teenagers Stress

There are many aspects that factor into the amount of work teenagers put into their lives. Some are positive, some are negative. Some statistics truly show the effects of the teenage workload. The often asked debatable question is ¨Is the teenage workload adding up?¨ well is it? Many sources are saying it might be. Today, high school students are said to be some of the busiest people. Some people may ask ¨why?¨.

A normal day for some high-schoolers includes school, extracurricular activity, work, homework, and then bed. For others, it may be a mix of one or two of those but not all. A study that was as done by APA stress in America in 2014 stated that what they saw in teen’s stress levels was very unhealthy.

What they learned was that during the school and summer months, teens reported higher stress levels than adults. Most students said that on average per night they had about 1.2 hours of homework. From a study that a Standford researcher did, it showed that from all of the homework that teenagers have, two hours of it every single night is worthless. That means if the average time spent on homework is 15 hours a week, half of that is not retained in the average student’s brain.

Many people think that just because teens have school, sports and work doesn’t mean it’s hard, just time-consuming. When students have no time for themselves or no time to do what they like to do, that’s when the stress levels start to rise. Although many adults work a 40 – hour week, most of them do not come home with a load of homework each night. Many of them go to work eight hours a day and come home and either care for their kids (if one chooses to have kids) or do whatever they may want.

To add to this, APA’s stress in America stated that many teen students started to feel depressed or anxious when their stress levels started increasing due to school, work, etc. Stress varies in everyone. Often times when people get stressed and have too much on their mind they can’t think and that can lead to loss of appetite. Not being able to eat is very unhealthy and just to think that all of these stresses are leading to this. School, work, and sports aren’t the only things that make people stressed out. Other stressors might include the amount of sleep one gets per night, the amount of exercise, and home life for some. A study stated that when people 18 and over did not maintain on average 8 hours per night, they appeared more stressed when they awoke. T

he study also stated that 18 percent of teens do no get even close to the amount of sleep per night that they say “is healthy”. Even when people accounted for enough sleep, some say that the amount of stress is the thing making them tired, not the amount of sleep they get per night. Another pass that can come with stress is weight gain or weight loss. Stress is different for everyone and this goes for how much a person eats and what a person eats when they become stressed.

27 percent of adults say that stress management comes from food, specifically unhealthy foods. One may put it this way, that eating the right foods can actually help manage stress, and they’re completely right. Eating foods such as bananas, yogurt, carrots, etc. Some people have special drinks that make them feel better, but sometimes they aren’t the healthiest. Some drinks that may bring down stress levels include tea and milk. These aren’t the only stressors in adults, or teenagers today. Other things might include too much screen time, family, friends, and diet, etc.

Some people ask “how can screen time affect the amount of stress that you have?”. Not only does the amount of screen time have an effect on the amount of exercise one gets or the increased stress levels, but it also can lead to a risk of anxiety or depression. The national institutes of health stated that every 1 and 3 teens will experience anxiety or depression and stress if a big cause of that. Pew research center did a study in California. They stated that 61 percent of teens said that their number 1 stressor in daily life is getting good grades. One may ask the question of how can family and friends cause stress.

During one’s high school years, stress levels are already higher than most with the set in having to deal with grades, sports, and work. Adding family may increase stress levels. For some people, family is a stress reliever. For others, it might add stress to their long list of things. Many people don’t know other people’s home lives. Some people may be going through their parent’s divorce or family death. Many are good at hiding their faces of sadness and eagerness to get out of high school and move on with their lives. Friends tie into that right here. We all know that in high school, that’s where your friends change.

This is where you learn who your true friends are, and this is most likely where you will find the people that will stick by your side. Sometimes having to always “impress your friends” puts a lot of stress on one. Last but not least, diet can be a huge contributor to one’s stress levels. The amount of food one eats and the kinds of foods one eats can make a big difference. Imagine having to go to school every day not feeling well. Imagine making plans that you’re really looking forward to and not feeling well enough to go through with them. That’s what one’s diet can do for stress.

From the survey that I conducted, I saw that every night on average students have 1 hour of homework. Out of the 3 people that I interviewed, 2 of them have a job. They all participate in extracurricular activities and they get 7-9 hours of sleep per night. On average that is much better than many teenagers today. The teenage workload has many things that add up to it. For teenagers, this may include school, sports, work, homework, etc. Whether one’s workload is manageable is up to them. Even though we might not want to participate in all these extra activities in our lives, we have to. Since we have to do some things in life, we have to make sure we find a balance between them all.

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