Voluntary organisation, The Sleep Charity, has launched an online campaign to promote the importance of sleep for the mental health of teenagers.
‘Teen Sleep Matters’ was launched ahead of World Mental Health Day on October 10 and is aimed at young people to address the link between poor sleeping habits and mental health. The campaign also deals with the affects of sleep deprivation and offers practical strategies to help teens sleep better.
The online initiative means that young people have access to support and advice about their sleeping habits. There’s also a downloadable eBook ‘You and Your Sleep’ for young people who want to understand more about the importance of a good night’s sleep.
Vicki Dawson, CEO of The Sleep Charity, said: “We have been supported on this project by our amazing Youth Advisory Panel, made up of young people aged between 13 and 19, across the country. They have been an invaluable asset in guiding us with the kind of online tools they would find useful, where they currently look for advice and what the barriers are for getting a good night’s sleep.
“Teens don’t always prioritise sleep. Instead, they will often sacrifice their sleep to cram in revision, tackle schoolwork, watch YouTube or spend time chatting with friends on social media. The aim of this Teen Sleep Matters campaign is to ensure young people value the importance of sleep for their physical and mental wellbeing, empower them with knowledge around sleep and feel confident to take the first steps towards making a positive change.”
Since July, The Sleep Charity has been developing the project after receiving funds from the National Lottery Community Fund and Coronavirus Mental Health Response Fund.
The Chief Executive of the Mental Health Foundation, Mark Rowland commented: “We know that good sleep is a fundamental building block for young people’s mental and physical health. But our research has shown that many young people are struggling with their sleep and that it is having a negative effect on their mental health.”
We know that significant numbers of teenagers are not getting the sleep they need in a typical week and are too tired to do schoolwork or study or concentrate in class. That is why a resource like this is so important.”
Ms Dawson concluded: “This is an ongoing project so we will continue to add more assets and functions to the website so that young people can get the most up to date useful advice and help they need regarding their sleep.
“COVID-19 has seen an increase in sleep issues. However, we know that teen sleep is an issue full stop with many not getting the amount they need to function and perform at their best. This is down to several factors including biological changes, school, relationships and technology. We hope our new Teen Sleep Hub will educate young people about the importance of a good night’s sleep.”
Find out more about ‘Teen Sleeps Matters’ at The Teen Sleep Hub website.