Social media has become a craze among the teenagers to an extent that they are ready to lose their sleep over being online on their social accounts late night. A UK study has found that one in five teens stay awake in the night just to send or check messages on social media, making themselves feel tired in school three times more than their peers who do not stay online at night.
And according to researchers at Wales Institute for Social and Economic Research, Data and Methods (WISERD) in the UK, girls access their social media accounts in night more as compared to boys.
The study has warned that this night-time activity affects teenagers’ happiness and well-being. Over 900 pupils of age between 12-15 years, were recruited and asked to complete a questionnaire about how often they woke up from their sleep at night to check their messages, use social media and their usual timings of going to bed and waking up.
Well they were also asked about how happy they were with things in their life including school life, friendships and appearance.
And one in five reported that they ‘almost always’ wake up just to log on.
The pupils who woke up to use social media every night, or the ones who did not have a usual time of waking up, were found to be three times more likely to say that they felt tired at school compared to their peers who never logged on at night or those who waked up at the same time in morning.
And the ones who said they felt tired at school were found to be less happy than other teenagers.
“Our research shows that a small but significant number of children and young people say that they often go to school feeling tired – and these are the same young people who also have the lowest levels of wellbeing,” said Sally Power, professor at WISERD.
“One in five young people questioned woke up every night and over one third wake-up at least once a week to check for messages. Use of social media appears to be invading the ‘sanctuary’ of the bedroom,” said Power.
The study findings support growing concerns about young people’s night-time use of social media. However, because of the complex range of possible explanations for tiredness at school, further larger studies will be needed before any firm conclusions can be made about the social causes and consequences of sleep deprivation among today’s youth.
The study was published in the Journal of Youth Studies.