More times than not, teens have to be forced, coaxed and threatened to get out of bed in the mornings. Research indicates that teenagers need about as much sleep as babies. With the balancing of school, work, sports and friends, however, they don’t get as much time to sleep the days away. With the need for so much sleep, they should go to bed from as early as 8:00pm but unfortunately, they may stay up late doing homework. No wonder then that they can’t wake up in the mornings.
You can insist that they start their homework as soon as they get home. If homework takes 2 to 3 hours to complete, then starting at 7:00 wont get them in bed early enough. After school work is complete, then time can be given to other activities. It is not a good idea though to engage in physical activity as this will release endorphins making it more difficult to fall asleep. They should instead find activities that allow them to unwind. It seems like setting a lot of restrictions but eventually, when a routine is set, it becomes a lot easier to follow.
….Then the weekend comes and the routine is thrown out of whack. After all the progress of sticking with the routine, it gets blown by them having a rowdy weekend. There is no school and so they push to stay up late but you have to insist that they not stray from the routine too much over the weekend. When they are able to prove they can wake up in the weekday mornings, then they will be allowed to stay up later on weekends.
You may understand about your child needing sleep but you have to instill in them a sense of responsibility. This will only groom and prepare them for the future. When they start working, their boss won’t be as understanding as you are about having a constantly late employee show up for work. You will have to enforce the discipline and consequences it takes for them to get out of bed early from now.
A good strategy is to set an alarm clock and place it across the room. The more annoying the better and it would help if you were able to change the sound once in awhile as they may become used to the sound. You may also want to consider turning down the thermostat a little in the winter season. This will give them a slight chill in the mornings, just enough to help them wake up.
Lastly, you can link rewards and consequences to waking up early. For example, if they are hoping to get the privilege of going to a concert on the weekend, they can if they can get themselves awake for school. You can use this as a coax like, “remember that concert?, you still want to go don’t you?” Then after about one or two reminders, you can say, “if I have to come in here one more time for you, there will be no concert.”
This issue is usually a sore spot for parents as it becomes very frustrating. Follow these tips to get your teens to bed early and make the waking up process a lot easier. You will appreciate the resulting benefits.