How Does Technology Impact the Quality of Sleep?
Smartphones, tablets, smartwatches, TVs, computers, technology has now become an essential part of our lives and we are surrounded by technology right from when we start our day in the morning till we call it a day in the night, technology has just become so essential for humanity and it is now impossible to live without technology.
Most people when they wake up the first thing that they do is check their smartphone and the same goes for when going to bed, people check their mobile phones before they go to sleep but these devices can have a huge impact on the body’s natural cycles, especially the ability to get quality sleep. Let us have a look at how technology affects our sleep.
How Technology Affects Sleep in Adults?
Most people complain about being tired or not being able to sleep at night and while there can be many factors involved in this, a big part is played by electronic devices which emit blue light.
Our bodies run on circadian rhythm and it takes place over a period of 24 hours and controls our body system such as when we feel active, when we feel awake, and when we feel sleepy. Circadian rhythms are based on the rise and fall of the sun and our brain uses environmental factors, such as light to determine when to wake up and when to sleep.
The blue light emitted by electronic devices such as mobile phones, tablets, laptops, etc can interfere with the circadian rhythm of our body due to its short wavelength. The way it does so is by delaying the production of a hormone called melatonin that is responsible for sleep induction and making us sleep. Delayed release of melatonin can lead to insomnia and poor sleep.
Poor Sleep and Insomnia can have a huge effect on both the physical and mental health of an individual. Having poor sleep affects both the mood and memory of an individual and he is not able to function and work as he should be. Not being able to sleep or having poor sleep makes an individual very irritating and he is not fit & active like he should be on a Good Morning day because he didn’t get enough sleep and it can also lead to daytime sleepiness, especially during work which can influence your health and personal life.
How Technology Affects Sleep in Children?
As compared to adults, children are much more vulnerable to the negative impacts of blue lights. As we grow up, our eyes become less sensitive to light but for children that is not the case, they are much more affected by light, particularly blue light as compared to adults.
In children, the blue light from tech gadgets such as mobile phones, tablets, laptops can suppress and delay the production of hormone melatonin twice as much when compared with adults, and using tech gadgets at night, before bed is associated with children falling asleep later and getting less sleep.
Just like in adults, not getting a proper Good Night sleep can affect the mood and behavior in children and it can affect their academic performance, not being able to perform up to the par. Sleep is also required for the proper physical and mental growth of the children and insufficient & poor sleep can affect various endocrine hormones that are responsible for the growth of the children. Plus, blue light can also affect the vision of children.
Why is a Good Night Sleep Important?
There are various reasons why a good night’s sleep can be very important for an individual’s health. Here are some reasons why is a good night’s sleep so important:
1. Improves your Productivity
Your sleep directly affects your productivity and missing out on sleep or not being able to sleep is not good. Most people, trying to be productive, forgo their sleep but this, in turn, reduces their productivity because your mind is not able to function for so long without getting rest.
2.Makes you Active
People who don’t get a good night’s sleep or sacrifice sleep for work, spending their late-night hours on laptops usually walk around like zombies or drunks. A person having a good night’s sleep will definitely not walk around like a zombie or a drunk.
3. Improves your Health
Having poor sleeping habits can have drastic effects on your health. Not only do bad sleeping habits increase your calorie input but they also put you at risk of developing different pathologies such as heart diseases, stroke, hypertension, etc. Having a good night’s sleep can improve your mood, makes your mind active, gives you control over yourself, and also lowers the psychological strain that develops when you have poor sleep habits.
Tips For Using Technology at Night
Most Health Experts recommend that you should avoid using blue light-emitting devices such as cell phones, tablets, or computers an hour or two before bedtime but for most people, it is not always possible to avoid using these devices before bed. So, if it is essential to use these devices at night then there are some tips to limit the effects of these tech devices and have a quality sleep:
1. Try not to use technology devices while you are on your bed: If it is not possible for you to completely eliminate the use of tech gadgets at night then try to not use them while you are going to bed
2. Keep your Electronics Devices Away From Bed: Most people have this habit of scrolling through their smartphone before sleeping but it can make it difficult for you to sleep. So, try to keep your electronic devices away from your bed.
3. Use Nighttime Mode/Dark Mode: Most of the devices now come with night mode or nighttime that is specially made for nighttime. It reduces the amount of blue light emitted from the screen and puts less strain on your eyes.
4. Use Blue-Blocker Glasses: There are socially designed eyeglasses that filter out the blue light. These glasses can reduce the amount of blue light that enters your eyes and reduce the effects of blue light on your vision and sleep cycle.