Smartphones have become indispensable for our generation – we rely on them for work, entertainment, and everything in between. But that does not mean we should bring them to bed as well. It’s common for most of us to snuggle up in the sheets with the phone in our hands, chatting with friends, playing games or watching videos at night. But this habit could seriously take a toll on our health. Here’s how:
1. It could lead to insomnia
Ever noticed that when you spend hours with your phone at night, you have trouble falling asleep quickly? That’s because of the blue light that your screen gives off. It reduces secretion of melatonin, the hormone responsible for inducing sleep.
And since so many of us fall asleep with our phones in our hands, there’s the infamous radiation to deal with. Although there are differing views about radiation being dangerous, it’s best to reduce screen time at night – because the insomnia bit is undisputed. Harvard Health suggests avoiding screens 2-3 hours before bedtime.
2. It causes mental disorders like depression and anxiety
When you trade in your night’s sleep for smartphone time, you are messing with your mental health. How? Research says that smartphones are responsible for insomnia. And as per many studies, “insomnia is bidirectionally related to anxiety and depression”.
So just a few sleepless nights in a row means you can suffer from anxiety or depression. Worse, if you are getting professionally treated for your disorder, you are less likely to respond because of your insomnia.
3. It affects your physical health as well
Several studies have linked sleep deprivation (less or poor quality of sleep) to health problems like diabetes, obesity, hypertension and heart disease. In fact, it even weakens the immune system, increases alcohol consumption, and lowers life expectancy.
Since not everything can be detected by science, it makes you wonder what more health problems lack of sleep brings about, doesn’t it?
4. It makes you less smart
You saw this coming, didn’t you? Like me, you probably experienced it as an after-effect each time you stayed up late binge-watching a show, or texting someone. For the uninitiated, I am talking about brain fog.
As the term indicates, you have a case of brain fog when you have trouble remembering things. Poor sleep makes one less alert, thus reducing alertness and concentration. It results in a bad memory, fatigue and impaired judgment – which can lead to a terrible day at work.
Phew! That was a scary list of repercussions, wasn’t it? But it will hopefully make it far less tempting for us to use our phones before we hit the sack.