Mountain View High School Health and AP Psychology students attended a presentation in the theater on the importance of sleep given by Rafael Pelayo MD during 2nd period on Wednesday November 18th. Pelayo has 22 years of experience in the field of sleep and teaches the popular “Sleep and Dreams” class at Stanford. Pelayo is a parent of an MVHS student and has come to speak to our students on 5 occasions in the past.
The goal of this presentation was to educate the Health and Psychology students on the importance of sleep and what they can do to improve upon how they sleep. At the beginning of the presentation, every attendee was asked to to fill out a survey regarding their sleep habits.
Over half of the students answered yes to the question “Do you wake up tired?”. When explaining the reason for this Pelayo emphasized that phones are not the center of the problem,
“It’s not helping, but it’s not the root of the issue. The root of the issue is understanding that sleep is the priority,” Pelayo said.
Pelayo also emphasized that drinking coffee alters chemical processes into making our brain think we are tired. He explained that although caffeine is heavily marketed to teens, it benefits them very little in reality
He also showed a picture of the MVHS announcement board during finals week in the 1990’s that displayed the motto “Sleep is for Slackers,” which is intriguing considering the fact that, if anything, students are encouraged to prioritize their sleep more, now in 2015. This “Sleep is for slackers” mindset is what Pelayo says is harming the students sleep.