How Electronics Can Impact Sleep Quality

Breathing and Sleep Center of Colorado Springs

In today’s fast-paced digital age, we have become increasingly dependent on electronic devices from smartphones and tablets to laptops and televisions. These gadgets have become vital companions, accompanying us from morning until night.

However, it’s important to note that the convenience they provide us often comes with a price, especially when it comes to sleep quality. In this article, the experts from Breathing and Sleep Center in Colorado Springs explore how electronics impact sleep quality, as well as provide tips for improving your sleep hygiene in this modern age.

How do Electronics Impact Sleep Quality?

Electronics impact sleep quality in the following ways:

Disrupting Circadian Rhythms

Your body operates on a natural internal clock known as the circadian rhythm, which is designed to regulate your sleep/wake cycle. Exposure to blue light, which is emitted by electronic screens, can disrupt this balance. Blue light suppresses melatonin production, which is the hormone responsible for inducing sleep. If your body is not producing adequate levels of melatonin, you’ll struggle to fall and stay asleep.

Mental Stimulation

Engaging with electronic devices before bedtime can also increase mental stimulation, which makes it harder for your mind to wind down. Whether watching intense movies or TV shows, scrolling through social media, or responding to emails, your brain stays alert and active, hindering the transition to a state of relaxation conducive to sleep.

Disruption of Sleep Patterns

When you use electronics late into the night, it disrupts your sleep patterns, which results in fragmented, shallow sleep. The constant buzzing of notifications or the temptation to check one last email or social media post can cause you to wake up multiple times throughout the night. This prevents you from experiencing the restorative deep sleep that is critical for overall health and well-being.

Tips for Improving Sleep Hygiene

The sleep doctors at Breathing and Sleep Center in Colorado Springs want to help you reclaim the restorative sleep you deserve. Here are the top 4 tips for improving your sleep hygiene:

Establish a Digital Curfew

Set a time each evening- ideally at least an hour before bedtime- to power down your electronic devices. Engage in relaxing activities such as taking a warm bath, reading a book, or practicing meditation to signal your brain that it’s time to go to sleep.

Create Tech-Free Sleeping Space

Promote better sleep hygiene by designating your bedroom as a tech-free zone. Ideally, electronics should be kept out of the bedroom. However, if you must have them nearby, keep them at least out of arm’s reach from the bed to reduce the temptation to use them late into the night or reach for them if you wake in the middle of the night.

Use Blue Light Filters

Use the blue light filter settings available on most electronic devices or invest in blue light-blocking glasses. This will reduce the negative effects of screen exposure, especially in the hours leading up to bedtime. Blue light suppresses the production of melatonin, but the blue light filters can mitigate this impact, which makes it easier to fall asleep naturally.

Make Sleep a Priority

Prioritize sleep by creating an environment conducive to sleep and establishing a consistent sleep schedule. Aim to get 7 to 9 hours of quality sleep each night and understand the importance of restorative sleep for your overall health and well-being.

Breathing and Sleep Center Can Help You Get a Good Night’s Sleep

While it’s true that electronics have revolutionized the way we live, their presence has come at a cost. However, by understanding these impacts and implementing simple strategies to minimize their effects, we can reclaim control of our sleep health and enjoy the restful, restorative sleep we need and deserve.

In some cases, your lack of restorative sleep may be due to sleep-disordered breathing such as sleep apnea. If this is the case, the sleep doctors at Breathing and Sleep Center can help. We can diagnose and treat these issues to help you get the sleep your body needs.

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