Smartphones are perfectly designed to disrupt sleep

no phone

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The mobile phone is possibly one of the most important tools we’ve ever developed, allowing us almost ubiquitous access to information and communication. And oddly, it’s also one of the most harmful, keeping us up late into the night working, answering emails, texts or just playing on social media.

Because they keep us mentally engaged late into the evening, they make it hard to detach from work so we can relax and fall asleep.

We are the first generation to have these marvellous devices and we need to start carefully teaching the next generation to use the technology responsibly. Since so many of us are sleep deprived anyway, the best advice really is to leave the phones alone at least an hour before bedtime. And keep them switched off while we sleep. The Blue light that smartphones emit is particularly bad for our sleep because it hinders melatonin production which is essential for a good night’s sleep.

Switching off can leave us feeling anxious though, especially since we’ve become so reliant on technology (so much so that noPhone wants to make a fake phone for those who have phone separation anxiety while their phone charges). There’s even a phobia about being out of mobile phone contact – nomophobia.

Instead, try something soothing like a little yoga or even makko-ho exercises before bed instead of posting another status update. You’ll sleep better for it.