Common Specialities
{{speciality.keyWord}}
Common Issues
{{issue.keyWord}}
Common Treatments
{{treatment.keyWord}}

Smartphones - Why Should We Avoid Them Before Bedtime?

Dr. Pravin Patel 85% (150 ratings)
MD - Medicine , MBBS
General Physician, Vadodara  •  42 years experience
Smartphones - Why Should We Avoid Them Before Bedtime?

For most of us, our smartphone is the first thing we look at in the morning and the last thing we check before going to bed. But, is it a right practise? Well, it is not. As per a recent study published by the Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston, Massachusetts, using a smartphone right before bedtime actually reduces the overall quality of sleep. 

Here's how:

  • Difficulty in falling asleep - We feel sleepy when our brain releases a hormone called melatonin, which is determined by the body's circadian rhythm. The blue light emitted by the screen of the smartphone interferes with this rhythm and the secretion of melatonin, which makes it difficult for us to fall asleep, even after we keep our phone aside. 
  • Poor quality of sleep - Using a smartphone before going to bed also hampers the overall quality of sleep because, when we check an office email or a text message as the last thing before we sleep, it gets difficult for our brain to relax, due to which we are unable to sleep peacefully.
  • Decreased attention span - Our productivity suffers during the day, due to lack of proper sleep at night. Also, not getting enough sleep is known to hamper our decision-making skills, impair our long & short-term memory, which leads to unnecessary stress and anxiety.
  • Increased risk of weight gain - Our body is more likely to feel hungry when we don't get our due share of sleep, as sleep deprivation slows down our metabolism. Thus, use of smartphone right before bedtime can induce cravings, which lead to snacking and weight gain.
  • Weak immune system - While we are asleep our immune system produces antibodies that help fight infections, it also releases a protein known as cytokines. This protein not only promotes sleep but also fights inflammation and other problems caused by stress. Lack of sound sleep decreases the production of cytokines and increases the risk of falling sick, it also slows down our recovery cycle. Further, long-term sleep deprivation can raise the risk of diseases, such as diabetes, heart problems and obesity. 
  • Skin damage - Sleeping late at night and not getting enough sleep can lead to dark circles, puffy eyes and fine lines across our face. The blue light emitted by our smartphones triggers the secretion of cortisol, which can damage our skin's smoothness and elasticity.

Thus, even if we are spending only some time on our smartphone before going to bed, it affects our overall mental and physical well-being. Want to know more about the problems sleep deprivation can cause or solutions that can help, consult our expert & get answers to questions!

8783 people found this helpful