Basically, we’re all screwed.
Bad news, guys – it turns out that checking your phone before bed is even worse for you than we all thought.
UCLA School of Medicine’s clinical professor of psychiatry, Dr Dan Siegel, says checking your phone just before bedtime will seriously affect your sleep, which then has a flow-on effect on other health issues.
Warning: The explanation is very scientific, but also fascinating (and disturbing for us phone addicts).
This stream of photons from these objects basically tells your brain “stay awake, it’s not time to go to sleep yet”. That light…tells your brain “don’t secrete melatonin yet, it’s not time for sleep”…We now know that what sleep is likely doing is allowing your active neurons to rest, which is fine, but more than that, the supportive calls, called glial cells, are now cleaning up the toxins that the neurons produce.
Dr Siegel says the vast majority of us need between seven and nine hours of sleep each night – and when we don’t get enough, it can affect our memory, attention and problem-solving skills.
It also affects our metabolism, making it more likely that we will eat more and gain weight.
But that doesn’t mean we have to give up our beloved smartphones altogether (which is great news for those of us who will only give up our devices when they are prised from our cold, dead hands).
We just need to prioritise sleep, and shut off our screens by 9pm, or AT LEAST one hour before going to bed.
Um, that seems like a big ask. But maybe it won’t kill us to not check Facebook until the morning…