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Old 07-18-2006, 07:19 PM   #1
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Sleeping Teens

I wasn't sure were to post this, so hopefully I peged it right...

I have a 15 year old son with Aspergers. And with all Atusim there are sleep issues.. I do not want to go the Sleeping pills route if I don't have to, but I would love to find something Natural... He hates pills so I don't want to get into taking a million pills... He wont go to bed before 2:00am and will not wake up until after Noon. School is starting for us in a few weeks and there is no way he will make Classes that start @ 7:15 am... Help, I am pulling my hair out with him...

 
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Old 07-19-2006, 07:24 AM   #2
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Re: Sleeping Teens

I do not have an answer, but you may want to post in the autism board. I wish you luck.
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Old 07-19-2006, 07:30 AM   #3
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Re: Sleeping Teens

This sounds to me like a bad habit. Since he is sleeping 8 hours and seems to be waking up on his own, the problem could simply be the time he is going to bed. The only thing that works around here is to gradually get them back to an earlier go to bed and get up time.
You might want to say that you want him in bed at 1:30 for the next week and get up at 11:30, then decrease the bedtime weekly so that it's not a shock. You might want to sit him down and let him know that school is not going to be an option. Right now, he can control getting himself back on schedule. Once school starts, that control is over and that is going to be hard for him.
Good luck... I am right there with you with my 14 year old. She likes to either sleep or argue
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Old 07-19-2006, 02:34 PM   #4
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Re: Sleeping Teens

The way my mom handled it for me when I was in highschool.. (and i know with autism it can be totally different) was to not only tell me that I am going to have to go to bed earlier but to wake me up earlier too.. wake him up and make him go out and do something.. go outside.. not just sit and watch tv... this way he is tired earlier also.
The first week of classes in high school was always rough but by the end of the first week I normally had decided I was ready to go to bed by 11.

Don't know if this will help you at all but it is worth a shot.

 
Old 07-19-2006, 02:53 PM   #5
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Re: Sleeping Teens

If I wasn't so smart I would have never gone to high school. Middle school in Florida starts at close to 10am so my parents were never home when I had to get up and I think I slept in half of those 3 years. I just could never wake up and I went to bed at 8pm each night and I still didn't wake up until 10-10am. My parents woke me up and made me take a shower before they left work but I would always fall back asleep and not wake up until 10-11am. So I just barely passed middle school and once I started high school I needed to catch the bus at 4:45am (yes I know that is crazy early) and for some reason I went through all four years of high school with a total of 11 days missed and 8 of those days I was in the hospital so that is a great record. After high school I never had problems waking up on time but honestly I'm still not sure why I had that much of a problem getting up.

Maybe this doesn't help you but I felt I should say it anyway as sometimes these problems happen for no real reason or at least not a reason we are aware about.

 
Old 07-19-2006, 05:50 PM   #6
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Re: Sleeping Teens

I have Asperger's, too, and I've always been plagued with sleep issues. I've actually been doing the exact same thing as your son now that it's summer: going to bed at three-thirty, waking up at 11 or noon. I've always been someone who doesn't require a lot of sleep (I didn't sleep through the night until age four), and now that I'm off SSRI's which made me sleep practically all day, I'm back to my normal (well, normal for me) sleeping habits. Why don't you try setting an alarm for him, forcing him to get up at seven am? That way, he'll be very, very tired, only having five hours of sleep, and he'll fall asleep much earlier in the night. You can slowly readjust his sleeping schedule. Oh, since he's an Aspie, does he have any benzodiazepines (Klonopin, Xanax, Valium, etc.) for his inevitable anxiety? If so, you can give him one of those to put him to sleep- it may be using medication, but it's a medication that he already uses anyway. You may also want to try having him listen to music or taking a soothing bath to relax him and keeping him away from things that provoke his sensory issues. If you have any questions, feel free to ask!
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Old 07-19-2006, 11:00 PM   #7
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Re: Sleeping Teens

My son has 5 alarm clocks in his room... They wake us up, he has them so loud and they don't even touch him... I have walked into his room and screamed in his ear and he hasn't moved. He is not currently on ANY meds and I know I need to put him on something. High School is so stressful as it is... Just like with you, we will wake him up, he can let the dog out, go to the bathroom and even eat, then the next thing we know he is sleeping again... Right now it is 11:56 pm and we have been FIGHTING for the last 2 hours to get him in bed. I am serriously considering a sledge hammer........

I think I am more frustrated with the whole thing right now because his younger sister is not sleeping well right now either and she does not have Aspergers.... grrrrrrrrrrr....

 
Old 07-20-2006, 08:04 AM   #8
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Re: Sleeping Teens

Wow! How do you get him up for school?

 
Old 07-20-2006, 03:04 PM   #9
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Re: Sleeping Teens

Well he sleeps with the dog, so I go in and agravate the dog, and then the dog jumps all over him.. When he does get up I have to follow up ever 5 mins to make sure he didn't go back to bed!!! It is a chore, wears me out....

 
Old 07-20-2006, 08:02 PM   #10
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Re: Sleeping Teens

First, I gotta tell you that I think your son's sleep schedule is the one that most teens gravitate to if they are allowed. My 13 & 15 year olds sleep almost that same schedule during the summer.

I agree with the advice that IF you want to try to start getting him on a school schedule (& that's only IF it's worth the aggravation to you), then what you have to do is gradually start waking him up earlier and earlier. Sounds like you'll have to do it the same way you do during the school year.

If he's slept till noon, you can't expect him to be sleepy early at night. The only way to get him to go to bed earlier is if he's actually tired (from having gotten up earlier).

 
Old 07-20-2006, 09:29 PM   #11
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Re: Sleeping Teens

I completely agree, but some days It is so frustrating that I feel it is not worth the fight. And then I go into my "I'm a bad mom" thing and then I get depressed or even angry for feeling that way... It is a horrible cycle and it has to end.. I don't have the best heath to fight with him constantly.. It just wears on me WAY too much... I know I can not give up on my child, but somedays I just can't help thinking, grrrrrrrr, why fight???

 
Old 07-21-2006, 09:20 AM   #12
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Re: Sleeping Teens

Well, ya know, it may not be worth the fight. You have to pick your battles. I expect that's especially true with an autistic child. That doesn't make you a bad Mom, that makes you a wise Mom!

Perhaps a compromise would be waiting until the week before school starts and then do a "crash course"?

 
Old 10-14-2006, 01:57 PM   #13
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Re: Sleeping Teens

im a 15 year old. and in the summer i get in a routine where i go to bed when the sun comes up and sleep till dinner time. the only way i fix it is if i stay up all night and then the next night go to bed around 10. then it usually works its way back in

 
Old 10-19-2006, 11:05 AM   #14
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Re: Sleeping Teens

I am 20 and in college. M-F I literally get a total of about 12 hours of sleep. While this is unhealthy, I still manage pretty well.

 
Old 10-20-2006, 06:20 AM   #15
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Re: Sleeping Teens

Hi! My son is 5 and he is autistic, though they are leaning towards changing his dx to aspergers. He has always had severe sleep issues and the ladies on the autism board suggested "Melatonin". I asked his doctor and she said it is all natural, non habit forming and safe, so I gave it a try. Well it has been over a year and he is still doing wonderfully on it!! I take it myself! It really helps me to wind down and get to sleep. My son was staying up late at night and was really moody the next day, but Melatonin took care of that. He is alseep within 30 minutes of taking it. It has really helped him to establish a healthy sleep schedule. He is on 1mg per night, I am on 3mg per night, so I would assume your son's dose would be in between. So I would try him on 2mg if you are interested in it. I buy ours at Walmart, it's over the counter and with the vitamins and supplements. Good luck to you hun!!

 
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