CDC Healthy School Highlights - High School Students and Lack of Sleep

The COVID-19 pandemic disrupted the daily life of adolescents in many ways, including affecting mental health and making schoolwork harder. In a CDC survey of high school students (grades 9-12), students who slept less than 7 hours during an average school night were more likely to report greater difficulty doing schoolwork compared with before the pandemic. Other findings were:

  • 77% of students said they experienced short sleep duration (less than 8 or more hours per school night).
  • 67% reported more difficulty doing schoolwork during the pandemic compared to pre-pandemic.
  • 37% of students reported poor mental health during the pandemic, which was related to them getting less than the recommended 8 or more hours of sleep per night.

A new study, published in CDC’s Preventing Chronic Disease, reports on how school districts can help improve students’ sleep health by implementing policies known to improve sleep duration, like later school start times. Also, family practices such as encouraging good sleep habits and setting bedtimes can help students get the recommended sleep for their overall health.

Read the report here and get more information on what schools, parents, and health professionals can do to help students get adequate sleep to strengthen their mental health and learning.

Healthy Schools | CDC