Are you suffering from insomnia? Is the recommended eight hours of uninterrupted sleep eluding you? If you answered yes, you should know that one potential cause of insomnia is your cell phone and/or other electronic devices. Surfing the internet, connecting with social media apps and watching television before your bedtime can be detrimental to your health. Sleep deprivation has been linked to obesity, diabetes and cancer. In addition, sleep deprivation can cause mental impairment which can lead to accidents and occupational errors. Electronic devices, i.e. cell phones, tablets, computers and TVs, emit blue light. Studies suggest that the blue light can inhibit the production of the sleep-inducing hormone-melatonin. A gland in your brain, the pineal gland produces melatonin. The blue light emitted from electronic devices inhibits the production of melatonin, thereby disrupting your circadian rhythm. Essentially, blue light emits wavelengths similar to daylight, which makes our bodies think it’s daytime. Exposure to blue light within one hour of bedtime can delay your ability to fall asleep by more than one hour.
To get the recommended amount of sleep, power down all electronic devices at least one to two hours before bedtime. To avoid the temptation to turn on your electronic devices, keep them outside your bedroom. In addition, be mindful of other unassuming light sources in your bedroom, such as your alarm clock and digital cable boxes. Following these simple tips can led to better sleep and optimal health.