WHY MODERN TECHNOLOGY IS AFFECTING OUR SLEEP
OUR ELECTRONICS ARE KEEPING US AWAKE AT NIGHT
Electronics and digital devices have become an integral part of our waking lives, but when it comes to bedtime; our electronics may be what’s keeping us awake at night. Countless studies have been carried out to investigate the impact of modern technology on our sleeping habits, and it turns out that our devices are preventing us from nodding off as well as playing havoc with the quality of our sleep, too! It’s not just adults who are suffering from poor quality sleep in the digital age. A study carried out in 2014 found that 62% of adolescents aged 12-20 years old took their phones to bed with them and that 1 in 12 adolescents were woken by a text in the middle of the night at least twice a week.
When it comes to using technology at bedtime, the only type of innovation you’ll ever need is a reliable mattress that will help you get the perfect amount of shut eye. Simba Sleep have designed their unique Hybrid mattresses as well as a number of other innovative products that help improve your bedtime ritual for a restful night’s sleep, without the need for gadgets. Find out below how the use of technology is having an impact on your sleep and why you should start turning off before you hit the hay.
Blue Light Emission Affects Our Health
Our internal clock, known as our ‘circadian rhythm’, is influenced by light and darkness, with our brain and our bodies associating light with our waking hours. However, studies have shown that the type of blue light emitted by our devices such as smartphones and tablets can confuse the photoreceptors in our retina, signalling to our brain that it is not yet time for sleep. As a result, we find it harder to fully relax, as our body behaves as it would during the day. This is known as ‘blue light exposure’, and is said to suppress melatonin production in our brains, therefore stopping you from falling into a deep, comfortable sleep. Not only does this interfere with your body’s natural rhythm, it also causes other issues such as elevated body temperature and negative moods. To minimise and regulate your exposure, you can download blue light filtering software and apps which will shift the light emitted by your phone or tablet to a warmer, redder wavelength.
Interactive Technology Overstimulates The Brain
If you’re the kind of person who lets their thoughts race as soon as they climb into bed, then using electronics and gadgets before bedtime is probably a big no-no. When creating the perfect sleeping environment, we are encouraged to wind down for the day with a dark, quiet and comfortable atmosphere that will help us on our way to the land of nod. Listening to music, playing video games and watching television before bed increases the electrical activity in our brain and makes us more stressed; not ideal when we’re supposed to be preparing ourselves for some quality shut-eye. Checking your emails once you’ve climbed under the duvet can have a similar effect, and leave you feeling wired and unable to drift off. Refrain from using electronics at least 30 minutes to an hour before bedtime and aim to keep all gadgets outside of the bedroom where possible.
Our Phones Interfere With Sleep
As well as making it more difficult to doze off, our mobile phones disturb our sleep with endless chimes, beeps and alerts as late night texts, calls, reminders and app updates pop up on our phone causing a constant stream of activity that many find impossible to ignore. We’ve grown used to keeping our mobile phone to hand even as we sleep to accommodate our need to be reached at all times. However, constant notifications keep us hooked to the screen, delaying our sleep and causing us to wake more regularly. The outcome is disruption of what should be a quality, deep sleep. If you really can’t be without your phone, leave it by your bedside, on silent and facing downwards to stop any notifications lighting up the screen, thus waking you from your slumber in the process. A few small changes in your bedtime routine can help you banish the negative impact of modern technology on your sleep, helping you to rest easier.