One in five teens use social networks in early hours: research

GARDEN SELFIE: Teenagers taking a selfie at a garden in Jaipur

One in five teenagers ‘almost always’ wakes up during the night to look at or post messages on Facebook or Twitter, according to new research…reports Asian Lite news.

GARDEN SELFIE: Teenagers taking a selfie at a garden in Jaipur

This regular nocturnal disruption is making some children more tired during lessons than experiencing very late bedtimes, says Daily Mail Online.

It is also impacting on pupils’ overall happiness, with lower levels of wellbeing reported by those who wake up to use social networks at night.

The findings are revealed in a paper being presented to the British Educational Research Association’s annual conference at Queen’s University, Belfast.

Researchers at the Wales Institute of Social and Economic Research, Data and Methods (WISERD) surveyed 412 pupils in year eight – ages 12 and 13 – and 436 pupils in year ten – 14 and 15 – in secondary schools in Wales.

The children were asked how often they wake at night to use social media. Twenty-two per cent of year eight pupils and 23 per cent among those in year ten answered ‘almost always’.

A further 14 per cent of the younger group and 15 per cent of the older, said they did so at least once a week.

More than half of those who reported ‘almost always’ waking to use social media also said they ‘almost always’ felt tired at school.

This was much higher than the overall percentage of children who admitted being fatigued in lessons – 32 per cent among year eight pupils and 39 per cent among year tens.

The study also found that ‘substantial’ proportions of pupils reported going to bed very late.

Dr Kimberly Horton, who is presenting the research to the conference, told Daily Mail Online, “Having a regular wake time and using social media during the night appear to be more important in determining whether a young person is always tired during the day than the time they go to bed, how long they spend in bed and having a regular bedtime.’’