Daylight Savings Time kicks in on Sunday, March, 9. With millions of Americans adjusting to the lost of an hour, the timing couldn't be better to focus on improving sleep habits.

No matter what your age, you should awaken refreshed, not tired; be able to stay awake throughout the day. Each family individual needs to learn how much sleep he or she needs in order to function at their best.

Parents are urged to talk to their children about the impact that the lack of sleep can have during the day. Even mild sleepiness can hurt performance - from taking exams to playing sports or video games.

One of the best ways to improve sleep? Turn off the TV. TV is on 7 hours, 40 minutes per day in an average American home. And one in four Americans fall asleep at least three times per week with the TV on. An average US youth spends 900 hours in school per year - 1,023 hours watching TV. Not only does Inertia contribute to obesity but TV watching before bed contributes to insomnia, says Lee Brown, M.D., Professor of Internal Medicine and Medical Director of the UNM Sleep Disorders Center.

Sleep Tips for Children and AdolescentsPointers for Parents:

· Educate yourself and your children about sleep needs in children and adolescents.

 · Enforce and maintain age-appropriate sleep schedules for children · Ask your child about his/her sleep/wake schedules, how it affects sleep patterns and whether their sleep is refreshing.

· Assess how much time is spent in extracurricular activities, homework and part-time jobs, and how these affect their sleep patterns and work with children to adjust their schedules to allow for sufficient sleep.

· Provide a home environment conducive to sleep. Establish a quiet time in the evening (dim lights, no loud music, no TV, computer, video games, or telephone one hour before bedtime).

The UNM Health Sciences Center Program in Sleep Medicine Sleep Disorders Center is active in promoting the health and wellness benefits of a good night's (or day's) sleep. The UNM Health Sciences Center Sleep Disorders Center is located in Medical Arts where Senior Health, LoboCare, and Orthopedics clinics operate.

You can learn more at their website,http://hospitals.unm.edu/sdc.


Contact: Cindy Foster, 272-3322