Can Homework Actually Make Your Child Sick?

If your child is complaining about being sick of too much homework, he might not be lying.  According to a recent study published in the Journal of Experimental Education, teenager kids spend about three hours a night, on average, doing homework. 

After examining over 4,300 students from 10 high-performing public and private schools in upper-middle class areas in California, they discovered that 56 percent of students reported that their number-one stress factor was “excessive” homework.

"We found a clear connection between the students' stress and physical impacts — migraines, ulcers and other stomach problems, sleep deprivation and exhaustion, and weight loss," stated Denise Pope, senior lecturer at the Stanford Graduate School of Education, as reported by

And it wasn’t just the teens who were complaining. Pope and her research team found the same to be true with the younger kids, as well.

Another researcher from Arizona State University found that these teens are at a high risk of suffering from drug and alcohol abuse, as well as depression and anxiety due to an exorbitant amount of stress from family, teachers and peers.

Although not everyone agrees with these findings -- some parents felt their kids didn’t have enough after-school assignments and another study, conducted by the Brookings Institute’s 2014 Brown Center Report on American Education, claims that the amount of homework has been more or less the same since 1984.

But the question remains — how much homework is too much? Pope feels that two hours for high schoolers and 90 minutes for middle schoolers is a respectable amount.

So what is a parent of an overwhelmed kid to do? Pope’s advice is to be your child’s advocate and cheerleader, as opposed to being the grader and corrector. "Parents need to advocate for their children with the tools and numbers and research in hand. We're talking about respectful dialogue."