Technology and Sleep
As fantastic as modern technology is, it has become such an integral aspect of our everyday lives that many of us struggle to remember life without them and tearing our eyes away from screens seems almost impossible!
As useful as these devices are in our waking life they actually might be a big hindrance in your ability to get a good night’s sleep. We will explain a few reasons why and offer some help!
Going to bed is a time for your body and mind to wind down and gently drift off into a sound sleep. Though you may feel by watching a favourite clip, texting friends goodnight or one last look at social media is nothing bad it can have a negative effect on your sleep. By engaging your brain your body thinks it needs to stay awake and when you do eventually put your devices down it takes far longer for your mind to realise it is time to sleep.
Melatonin is the hormone that controls our sleeping cycle. The blue lights emitted from the screens of our technology actually affects the production of melatonin and so this has an effect on our ability to fall asleep and even stay asleep.
Bed should mean sleep.
When we use technology in the bedroom our body learns to associate this space with this activity. When we start to watch programmes in our bed our body begins to associate this space with entertainment and not sleep. This will make falling asleep in your bed harder.
Ways to help.
You can start by not allowing yourself to have any contact with technology for at least 30 minutes before bed. If this seems an impossible task then you can do other things to help. Many phones now include a ‘night mode’ and this adjusts the lights to become warmer so it is not as harsh on your eyes. There are actually some pieces on technology that can help too! Small sleep trackers you wear are growing in popularity, they track your sleep to see how much you have and how many times you wake.