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Jennifer Martin, PhD: Sleep Lessons Learned During COVID-19

Dr. Jennifer Martin explains how teenagers could benefit from a better sleep schedule and a later wake up time.

Sleep researchers might be able to learn a lot more about the sleep habits of both adults and adolescents during the ongoing coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.

With schools taking on a virtual format during the pandemic, school-aged children are now able to sleep a little more because they no longer have to commute to a physical school building.

In an interview with HCPLive®, Jennifer Martin, PhD, professor of medicine at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, said that might not be necessarily a bad thing.

Martin explained that teenagers by nature require more sleep than adults do and a later start in the morning could be beneficial in the long-run and allow them to have better results in their virtual classroom.

However, Martin said the later start shouldn’t coincide with a later bedtime as well.

The COVID-19 also represents an opportunity to dig into better clinical research in the realm of sleep.

Martin said while there has not been a lot of actual studies conducted on some of the sleep habits noticed, she said many patients are saying there has been an uptick in nightmares in recent months and there should be more research done corroborating these reports.