Highs and Lows Moods and melodrama

Q: My child and I always clash over her sleep patterns—she says I don’t understand. Who is right?
A: You both probably are! It is true that it is typical for teenagers to shift to a sleeping pattern of later bedtimes and later rising over the weekends. However, overall she may be getting less sleep than if she had a consistently earlier bedtime. But staying up late is about watching late-night TV, going to parties and clubs, being awake when all the adults are asleep—it’s exciting and it’s what teenagers do. There is also some evidence that young people’s brains function better later in the day.

If you think that she is sleep-deprived and that this is affecting her mood and her schoolwork, you may need to ...

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