Digital devices are among our closest companions. They accompany us almost everywhere we go, are checked first thing in the morning and are used right until going to sleep.
Is this penchant for bedtime clicking and swiping resulting in restless nights of tossing and turning? That’s a question posed by this infographic from Georgetown University’s School of Nursing.
Citing studies from Harvard University, the Sleep Foundation and Brigham and Women’s Hospital, it measures the various impacts of digital devices on our ability to rest. The biggest culprit appears to be the bluish screen light, which stimulates cortisol production and causes the body to feel alert well into the evening.
The issue of screens before bedtime is not a new phenomenon: before smartphones and tablets, it was computer monitors and televisions. Nevertheless, it’s worth considering shutting these devices down early to guarantee some decent shuteye.
Other observations include:
- The average American uses their smartphone or gadget up to 46 times a day.
- An overwhelming 90% of US adults and 75% of US children regularly use electronic devices within an hour of bedtime.
- Late night device usage can delay the time taken to fall asleep, reduces the amount of REM sleep and affects morning alertness.