Delayed Sleep Phase Syndrome In Teens

Recently I was driving in my car and listening to the radio when a well known healthcare reporter came on to emphasize the importance of sleep.  He highlighted the fact he has teenagers who have delayed sleep phase syndrome - meaning they like to stay up late and sleep in late. This is normal in teenagers.  He stressed the importance of making sure teenagers got sleep (which is absolutely true) and made the statement that in order to do that you should make your teenager go to bed early.  That made me cringe.  If you have a teenager that likes to stay up late and sleep in late and your solution is to make him/her go to bed early you are going to be fighting a battle you can't win.  You will end up with a teenager resisting the bedtime and laying awake in bed.  It is impossible to make someone go to sleep and if you attempt to do this the result is usually the opposite of what you want.  Going to bed early does not increase sleep drive. If you want to increase sleep drive you must get your teenager up early and get them physically active during the day. Make sure they are awake at least 16 hours before you want them to go to bed and you will have a much better chance.