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Why Your Parents Should Let You Sleep

girl sleeping in bed covered with pillow

You use every minute of the day. School, homework, sports, part-time jobs, your social life, and other activities often mean you get up early and stay up late. It probably seems like you barely have time to sleep. And if you're not getting 8-10 hours of shut-eye, you aren't getting enough.

A good night's rest is as important as getting three healthy meals a day: It's mental nourishment. Without enough sleep, you can't be your best.

But sometimes, when you do get the rare chance to sleep more, you might get grief from your parents. So here's help -- six reasons to give them so you can sleep in when you're running low on Zzz's.

1. "More sleep could help me get better grades."

Without enough rest, you can't be expected to do your best work at school. A long-term lack of shut-eye can lead to bad grades, memory problems, and poor judgment. Some studies have shown a higher chance for depression and ADHD, too.

2. "More sleep will help me be a safer driver."

Being groggy is dangerous, especially when you're behind the wheel of a 2,000-pound car early in the morning. You're not just a hazard to yourself -- you're endangering other drivers.

One study shows a link between earlier school starts and car accidents involving teens, so it's extra-important to be alert when you're behind the wheel in the morning.

3. "I really do need more shut-eye."

Sleep's not something you just want -- it's something you need as a teen. At your age, you're biologically programmed to want to sleep more -- and to doze off later at night. For the most part, adults need less Zzz's: 7 to 9 hours.

4. "Enough sleep can help me keep off extra pounds."

A study found that teens who slept less than 8 hours each night and then didn't make up the sleep they missed had a higher risk of becoming obese. It's important to try to get right amount of rest on a regular basis, but you may be able to catch up on some shut-eye on weekends and holidays to fight off unhealthy extra pounds.

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