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Sleep Science Discoveries: How Electronics Are Affecting Your Sleep

February 27, 2020

Filed under: Uncategorized — drstriebel @ 3:23 pm

person on their cellphone laying in bedNearly everybody is guilty of taking a last-minute scroll on their Facebook before bedtime or answering one final email from work. Unfortunately, these final minutes that you spend before you fall asleep have a huge impact on the quality of rest you get, which can leave you either feeling perky or fatigued the next morning. Various sleep science studies have confirmed that there are a few connections between electronic use before bedtime and quality of rest. Read on to learn what the research says and how you can correct any sleeping problems you may be experiencing.

Melatonin Suppression

The first and most well-known way that electronics can affect your quality of sleep is by emitting blue light. This is a type of light used to illuminate the screens of cell phones, laptops, tablets, and even televisions. It’s responsible for suppressing your body’s melatonin production, which is a vital hormone that makes you feel sleepy and controls your circadian rhythm. When your melatonin is lower, it makes it harder for you to fall and stay asleep, which means that you’ll likely be waking up periodically throughout the night, even if you just look at your cellphone for 15 minutes before bed!

To keep your electronics from affecting your melatonin production, it’s best to avoid using them before you fall asleep. Or, you can set your smart phone or laptop to nighttime mode, which emits a warmer yellow light. Although, it’s important to note that some studies have been conducted and found that this filter isn’t any better than blue light, so be wary!

Reawakening Your Brain

It may seem harmless to try and wind down to an episode of your favorite TV show before bed. However, when you keep your mind engaged with electronics, it can trick you into staying awake. After spending most of the day working with electronics and other blue light-emitting technology, it’s best for your brain to take a rest and unwind.

Cell Phone Anxiety

Whether you’re a teen or an adult, most people sleep with their phone on their nightstand on the charger. The only problem with this is that, depending on the alert settings, it could ring, vibrate, and send alerts throughout the night, continuously waking you up. As you get used to this, it can cause you to stay alert, even when you’re asleep, waiting for an important reminder or phone call. This anxiety can cause you to routinely awake at all times of the night and cause you to lose countless hours of precious rest.

If you try all of the suggestions above and still have trouble resting, it could be a sign that you have a more serious underlying condition, called sleep apnea in Huber Heights. If this is the case, it’s important for you to seek help from a sleep specialist and work with a dentist in Huber Heights to develop a treatment plan so you can get the quality of rest that you deserve.

About the Author

Dr. James Striebel has been practicing dentistry for over 20 years. In that time, he has focused on providing each of his patients with high-quality treatments to help improve their overall quality of rest. He is an active member of the American Academy of Dental Sleep Medicine, American Orthodontic Society, and the Dayton Dental Society, to name just a few. If you have questions or would like to schedule a consultation to learn more about sleep apnea treatment, visit his website or call 937-235-2400.

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