A new study on sleep deprivation in teenagers showed that lack of sleep leads to taking up smoking and drinking.
The study was based on a questionnaire survey that included 1,362 adolescents, with an average age of 14.6 years, in five high schools in China. The survey included questions on sleep patterns, sleep problems, smoking and drinking behaviour, behavioural and emotional problems, life stress, and demographic characteristics of the adolescent and family.

Sleeping less than eight hours at night, frequent nightmares and difficulty initiating sleep were linked to drinking. Smoking was associated with sleeping less than eight hours, bedtime later than midnight, nightmares, difficulty initiating sleep, difficulty maintaining sleep and hypnotic medication use.

The study results suggest urgent sleep intervention i.e. education in sleep hygiene and the treatment of sleep disturbances in order to prevent adolescent substance abuse.

Medical expert claim that between seven and eight hours of sleep is needed each night to maintain good health and optimum performance.