Parents' Guide to

Sleepless in America

By Melissa Camacho, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 13+

Sleep-deprivation docu informative; some tragic scenarios.

Movie NR 2015 90 minutes
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There's certainly a lot to be learned here. In a country where 40 percent of adults and 70 percent of teenagers are sleep-deprived, this informative documentary demonstrates how sleep is no less important than water, nutritious food, and exercise for healthy human functioning. More importantly, it brings attention to the fact that, despite the critical role that sleep plays in our overall health and well-being, American society collectively fails to make it a priority. It also offers some interesting explanations about the impact modern inventions, ranging from the light bulb to the Internet, have historically had on human beings' willingness and ability to get adequate numbers of hours of undisturbed sleep to live better lives.

It succeeds at being educational and non-judgmental as it offers this information as well as some details about how to combat the effects of sleep deprivation and improve insomnia. However, given the major and frightening impact sleeplessness can have, one can't help feeling that more effort can and should be made to discuss how American society needs to reevaluate itself, its lifestyle, and the expectations placed on people to work endless hours to keep their jobs or make ends meet. The importance of being held accountable for engaging in certain activities while sleepy isn't emphasized enough, either.

Movie Details

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