At night, when we are sleeping, something powerful and important is happening. This is when our brain heals from the anxiety of the day. So, you can imagine what happens when we don’t get a good night’s sleep. Stress and anxiety build and can snowball into the next day, and the next, and the next…
When our sleep environment is not adequate to facilitate a restful night’s sleep, then we suffer the following day. As William Shakespeare said, sleep is the ‘balm of hurt minds,’ a chief nourishing element in life’s feast.
We desperately need quality sleep, and technology often interferes. Many of us view sleep as something that gets in the way of our internet surfing and TV watching. We don’t realize the peace we can experience as a benefit of a good night’s sleep.
Researchers are learning that without a good night’s sleep, our health begins to be compromised, and we struggle in our day-to-day lives. Sleep disorder diagnoses are on the rise. With over 71% of us sleeping with our phones by the bed, it has become a large factor in sleep disorders. Anxiety and depression are symptoms of sleep disorders, and anxiety is the number one mental illness in our world today.
Is it a coincidence that we all have smartphones in use constantly, and we also have higher than ever anxiety issues? I highly doubt it.
Do you need a nap every afternoon, wake up tired in the morning, or fall asleep while watching TV? Then quite possibly you need to curb your device usage at bedtime. See if you can relate to a few other symptoms that manifest when tech interrupts your sleep:
- Trouble focusing during the day
- Needing alcohol to fall asleep
- Difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep
- Consuming multiple energy drinks during the day to stay awake
- Feeling that your time is not productive
If any of the above describes you, then you are likely not getting proper sleep and should consider less screen time to support your sleep health.
Research supports that if you spend more than one hour each day on your device, you will be more likely to exhibit symptoms of depression, which is the twin of anxiety. Too much device usage an hour before bedtime can cause brain stimulation, which interferes with REM sleep. The best way to remedy this—set your bedtime, and don’t watch your screen for 2 hours before sleeping.
Turn the lights down, take a warm bath then tuck away for a lovely night’s sleep. You will notice the difference the following day and be glad you did.