October 10, 2011
Science Daily/University of Wisconsin-Madison
An ongoing lack of sleep during adolescence could lead to more than dragging, foggy teens, a new study suggests.
"One possible implication of our study is that if you lose too much sleep during adolescence, especially chronically, there may be lasting consequences in terms of the wiring of the brain," says Dr. Chiara Cirelli, associate professor in the department of psychiatry at the School of Medicine and Public Health.
"These results using acute manipulations of just eight to 10 hours show that the time spent asleep or awake affects how many synapses are being formed or removed in the adolescent brain," Cirelli says. "The important next question is what happens with chronic sleep restriction, a condition that many adolescents are often experiencing."