Is one of the last things you remember before going to sleep is liking a post of a really cute dog?
Can’t resist pinging off some final emails or messages before bed?
Does the glowing light of your screen light bathe your bedroom as you drift off to the land of nod?
Wait, I’m starting to sound like a bad infomercial!
If you’re one of the many (many, many, many) people who check their phone right before going sleep, you might want to rethink your choice.
Reduction in melatonin
The light from your screen reduces your body’s natural production of melatonin, your sleep hormone. Which makes it more difficult to fall asleep.
Your sleep is less restful
You’ve just bombarded your brain with a series of images or have read a work email. Even though you might think you’ve resolved it all and you’re done, your brain needs time to process everything you’ve just thrown at it.
So, if you’re a late night phone user, don’t be surprised if a Kardashian pops into your dream to tell you you’re late for that big presentation at work.
Scroll around the clock
You literally have the whole world at your fingertips and modern media has no natural stopping points. Which means you can keep on scrolling without realising how much time has passed.
We’ve all tumbled down the internet rabbit hole and popped out at 2am with a head full of ideas and an inexplicable lack of tiredness. So, what are you going to do with your second wind? Most likely keep playing with your phone, which kicks you straight back into the poor sleep cycle.
Hello 7am double shot long black!
We all go through stages of waking in the night and not falling right back to sleep. If this is when you pick up your phone to see what you’ve missed in the last couple of hours, you’re training yourself to keep waking up.
Because, A) you’re rewarding your brain when it wakes with the little dopamine hit of checking your social media and; B) you’re less likely to be able to fall back into a restful sleep (as per the points above).
Rather than jumping back online, try writing a list of what’s on your mind over a comforting Golden Mylk / Turmeric Latte (here are a couple of easy recipes – tested successfully at 2am!) You’ll be back pumping out the z’s in no time!
The jury is still out on the exact impact that being in close proximity of your phone may have on your health. And while there is no 100% certainty around whether there is an increased risk of cancer or health issues linked to sleeping next to an electronic transmitting device… why risk it?
It’s not going to do any harm to move it away from your bedside table so why not give it a try? Doing this will also remove the temptation to fall into the traps of late night phone habits we’ve already discussed.
“NBD, I don’t need all that much sleep anyway Emily.” I hear you say.
You kinda do. You may be used to only getting a few hours but reward yourself with a solid, restful 7-8 hours and see how you feel. You might be surprised at your energy levels, boosted mood and clarity.
You’ll look fresher and your boss may even reward your increased work performance with a pay rise*. Yep, you’re welcome.
As tough as it is to break the habit, just try giving you and your phone a little space before bedtime and see how you feel.
- Switch off your devices 2 hours before bed and opt for a mug of Golden Mylk and a good book instead.
- Pop your phone (and iPad wink ) just outside of your room to avoid temptation. This works especially well now that it’s too cold to get out of bed unless you have to!
- If your alarm is on your phone, that’s okay. By having your phone further away it means that you have to get up to switch it off, waking you up and reducing the risk of hitting snooze. So you can make that morning yoga class or bootcamp! #bonus
*Disclaimer … I can’t guarantee that you’ll get a promotion or pay rise but you never know!
Do you scroll right before sleep?