From the ICS Counseling Department: The Importance of Sleep

by Dotti Lang, Upper School Counselor
Our need for sleep may vary and change as we age, but our need for quality sleep does not. Our bodies will tell us what we need, yet our busy lifestyles have taught us to push through and ignore our bodies. Figuring out what works best for you is a process and I encourage everyone to take the time to do this. You will see both short- and long-term benefits.

Sleep is not one-size-fits-all; Some of us need seven hours and some of us may need nine to feel our best. Experiment and take note. Consistency is key to getting a good night’s rest and maintaining positive moods. Research also suggests that our most restorative, restful (non-REM) sleep occurs in the earlier part of night, regardless of how many total hours we sleep. As the clock creeps towards daybreak, our sleep becomes increasingly restless and dream-filled (REM).
Here are just a few of the many benefits of getting a good night’s sleep:
  • Maintain a Healthy Weight
  • Tends to Make Us Eat Healthier
  • Improves Concentration
  • Helps Maximize Athletic Performance
  • Reduce Risk of Heart Disease
  • Reduce Risk of Stroke
  • Improves Productivity
  • Improves Overall Mood
  • Improves Metabolism
  • Reduce Risk of Diabetes
  • Reduce Risk of Depression
  • Strengthen Your Immune System
  • Decrease Inflammation
  • Improve Social Affect
Indian Creek places great importance in the vast research which shows the many benefits to teens getting more sleep, by designing the School's program around a "late start" schedule for Upper School. As the late start movement gains momentum nationwide, local school and government leaders continue to seek out ICS administrators for assistance in helping to model their communities after the Indian Creek template. 

Parents can emphasize the importance of sleep at home by having conversations with children of all ages about the importance of sleep. Other actions parents can take to facilitate proper rest include requiring that student devices are stored overnight away in an area of the house other than the bedroom, restricting device use after a certain time of night, promote daily exercise, and encourage a routine. For more advice on ways to ensure that your student is getting enough sleep, please contact the Indian Creek Counseling Department.