In the world of technology we live in we are always connected. For most people, the last thing you do before you go to bed is check your phone and the first thing in the morning you do is check your phone. What you may not realize is that using your phone before bed is actually making your sleep worse, and could be causing you to have issues falling asleep or staying asleep.
Our electronics, not only our phone but tvs too, emit blue light from their screens. This blue light is the link to many problems that may occur when sleeping. The artificial blue light waves that are coming out of your phone mess with your body’s natural sleep and wake cycle. Without technology present, the only light at night is typically just a room light or the sun which signals our bodies when it is night or day out.
Blue Light Suppresses Melatonin
Melatonin is the natural hormone that our body releases, that regulates our circadian rhythm. The circadian rhythm is our body's way of knowing if it is night or day, dark out or light out. Because of this, the blue light on our phones convinces our brain that it is still light out, therefore the hormone, melatonin, is not released telling your body it is time for bed. According to the Cleveland Medical Clinic, when your body runs low on it, you can experience insomnia, tiredness during the day and irritability.
It is recommended to put away your phone for at least 30 minutes before you fall asleep, in order to cut back on your blue light intake at night. Some even recommend 2-3 hours of screen free time before bed, to allow your body time to release the melatonin.
Delays REM Sleep
Rapid Eye Movement (REM) sleep, is the stage in sleeping where dreaming occurs. It is also known for being crucial in memory and critical thinking. REM can be traced back to your mood as well. During REM your body typically goes through many changes such as higher blood pressure and changes in body temperature. REM sleep happens multiple times during the night and is significant in the way you feel.
Technology affects REM sleep due to the fact that you could be watching tv, or on social media and see something that impacts you emotionally, causing you to wake up. You can hear a notification go off on your phone or computer and immediately sit up or get out of bed to check to see what the notification was for. However, these factors from your phone, while helpful and entertaining during the day, impact your sleep cycles. According to Science News for Students, Looking at screens that gave off intense blue light cut someone’s sleep and Those exposed to blue light also woke up more often at night.
It is recommended that when you start to wind down for bed time that instead of scrolling through social media or playing a game on your phone, read a book.
Makes You Remain More Awake At Night
Because using technology has become a 24/7 activity, using electronics before bed seems like a no brainer. People think that they are relaxing on their phones before bed when in reality, not only the harsh blue light but the activities and notifications are signaling your brain that it is time to be alert to everything going on. According to the Cleveland Health Clinic, “Checking your phone stimulates the brain so we are more active and awake,” says Dr. Walia. “Even just a quick check can engage your brain and prolong sleep.”
If you’re noticing that your sleep schedule is suffering and you’re not sure why, check your technology before bed habits. Adapt your lifestyle to ways that don't involve using your phone before bed. At Wholesale Mattress Center we want to make sure you are getting the best sleep possible. Contact us today if you’re looking for a new mattress for a better night's sleep at 334-821-0558.