With the exams finally behind us and the holidays stretching ahead it has struck me that one thing teenagers can do very well is sleep.
In our house there is a definite teen sleep pattern evolving that eschews that of the rest of the house and means not only are our body clocks not in tune but also we are out of sync on so many other levels as a result.
If he is not working to pay for his multiple upcoming summer holidays, our eldest will go out as we go to bed, arrive home as my husband goes to work, go to sleep as I get up and his breakfast is our lunch and so on and so forth. As for our youngest, well she is going through a massive growth spurt at the moment and is permanently tired so needs no encouragement to sleep some more.
I am certainly not a morning person and relish the holidays and the chance for some extra shut eye, but my teenagers make sleeping look like an Olympic sport when not at school and I confess that on a couple of occasions I have resorted to the habit namely reserved for new mums of creeping in to their rooms and checking for a pulse for fear they have slipped in to a sleep induced coma!
Of course this whole scenario is ironic as I am sure like many other parents of teenagers will attest, the term time is a constant battle to get them to go to bed and get enough sleep, so if I argue with them now about cutting their sleep short and getting up earlier, they simply raise their eyebrows and challenge my logic.
Research from the National Sleep Foundation shows that teenagers between the ages of 14-18 need around 9 hours sleep a night, not only for their general well being but also to function at their best.
As adults, we are all too aware of the benefits of sleep. It makes us more alert and we have more energy, we think more clearly and make