Is Technology Helping Us Achieve a Better Sleep?

Is Technology Helping Us Achieve a Better Sleep?

Brush your teeth. Climb into bed. Toss. Turn. Count some sheep. Check your Facebook. Does this become your ritual every night?

Did you know that 2/3 of Americans don’t get enough sleep? If you’re having trouble sleeping, the technology could be the culprit. The average technology user in the United States spends nearly 11 hours per day looking at screens and 95% of Americans use some form of technology within an hour before going to bed.

Cell phones

65% of adults have slept with a cell phone on or next to their beds.

22% fall asleep with cell phone ringers on in their bedrooms.

10% reported waking up a few nights each week due to their phones

Computers

61% of Americans use computers or laptops regularly in the hour before going to bed.

People who use computers within an hour of trying to fall asleep are 50% less likely to report getting a good night’s sleep.

Using computers late at night is associated with sleep disorders, stress, and depressive symptoms.

TV or Videos

84% of Americans watch TV or videos an hour before going to bed.

People ages 19-29 are most likely to watch programs in their bedrooms an hour before going to bed.

Comedy, drama, and news are the top programs people watch before going to sleep.

Video Games

19% of people regularly play video or computer games in the hour before going to bed

10% of people reported playing video games that contain violence, minimal blood, sexual content, crude humor, or gambling.

People ages 13-18 are most likely to play video or computer games with these elements at least a few nights a week.

Teens, Technology, and Sleep

Compared to older age cohorts, young adults ages 13-29 are more likely to use technology in the hour before trying to go to sleep.

56% of generation Z’ers text almost every night in the hour before going to bed while only 22% of generation X’ers and just 12% of Baby Boomers report sleeping with their cell phone ringers on in their bedrooms.

61% of teens ages 13-18 and 23% or young adults ages 19-29 get less recommended amounts of sleep each night.

Why Do Gadgets Keep You Awake

Suppresses Melatonin
Blue light emitted by screens inhibits the production of melatonin, the hormone that controls circadian rhythm.

Keeps Brain Active
Technology keeps your mind engaged and tricks your brain into thinking it needs to stay awake.

Interrupts Sleep
Texts, emails, and calendar reminders can wake you up and disrupt the quality of your sleep.

87% of Americans report having sleeping problems at least a few nights each week. Common sleeping problems include:

  • Difficulty falling asleep
  • Waking up during the night
  • Waking up feeling unrefreshed

Did you know that 90% of people with insomnia also have another health condition? Lack of sleep increases the risk of:

  • Heart disease
  • High blood pressure
  • Stroke
  • Diabetes
  • Car accidents

52% of drivers have reported driving drowsy, and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that fatigue causes 100,000 auto crashes and 1,550 crash-related deaths each year in the U.S.

Tips for Healthy Sleeping Habits

Stick to a regular Sleeping Schedule
Going to bed and waking up at the same time helps to regulate your body’s clock and make it easier to fall asleep and stay asleep all night.

Limit Caffeine Four to Six Hours Before Bedtime
Since caffeine is a stimulant, it’s important to refrain from drinking caffeine before attempting to fall asleep.

Avoid Bright Light and Electronics Before Bed
Light from electronic devices can activate your brain and make it harder for you to fall asleep.

Exercise
Daily exercise helps to promote more restful sleep.

Take Time to Unwind
Spend the last hour before bed doing a calming activity.
– Take a bath
– Read a book or magazine
– Practice relaxation exercises

So, is technology helping us achieve a better sleep? Think again.

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Ethan Wright
Ethan Wright is a health enthusiast who believes every great day begins with a good night sleep. He is currently a researcher and writer for Bedding Stock, an online retailer of gel memory foam mattress in the USA. When not wearing his writing hat, you will see him traveling to places with his journal.

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