Published: 05/31/2013 - Updated: 10/06/2018
Author: Miriam Reyes
It is likely that many of us, regardless of age or gender, share the habit of surfing the Internet before going to sleep. The reasons may be varied, while some people use it to play, others take advantage of this time to get into social networks, check email, get ahead on pending tasks, etc.
No matter the reason, it seems to be the perfect way to relax and wind down. However, in fact, Internet use during this time may be affecting our quality of sleep.
Equipment that alters your sleep
The computer you are using to read this article, the screen, matters. The smaller the device, the more intense the light and sound and all of these factors stimulate the brain, so that you end up receiving the message that it is still daylight.
When exposed to this type of light at nighttime, we remain alert and feel that we are not tired. The first negative aspect is that we alter our sleep schedules, reducing them considerably. So, this ultimately results in increased nighttime activity and sleep will be less restful, leaving us with a feeling of physical and mental fatigue.
Not sleeping well is a problem that does not just end there: It affects productivity and your performance during the day, or you may also become irritable and have to work harder to concentrate.
Analyse the content that you check
If the content you're reviewing appears to be so important to you, whether it is work or not, then you are not giving yourself the opportunity to disconnect from that activity, and it is more likely to generate stress: If you intend to sleep, you may find yourself unable to. The activity of surfing the internet before bedtime will eventually lead to general fatigue.
Something very similar happens if you occupy your time check the news or other informational content of this type, because it is usually negative, upsetting your mind which makes it more difficult to fall into the light sleep stage.
Playing games can be relaxing to some extent, but it is a well-known fact that many of them can make us spend hours in front of the monitor, and some tend to contain a lot of violence, which can cause insomnia and, in some cases, also nightmares.
Recommendations for better quality sleep
We are not saying that you should avoid technology altogether, since the internet has become a very useful tool, however the secret is to find a healthy balance. The following steps can help prevent bad sleeping patterns due to the use of technology:
- Do not wear any device or apparatus to bed, some even recommend not having TV in your room.
- Make sure that your last visited page on the internet is at least two hours before bed.
- Fix brightness and sound from your computer, making sure that they do not dazzle or overwhelm you.
- Do not turn your room into an office, avoid the use of the computer or mobile phone when it's your bedtime.
- If you are looking for entertainment, try to play a nice game that generates wellbeing as this will help you rest better.
Do not make it a habit
We may occasionally use these devices to hang out, or resolve our outstanding tasks, however, this should not become a way of life, because during hours of rest our body is renewed and prepares us for the follow day's activities. The continuous use of technology late at night can change our sleeping habits and become a source of recurrent insomnia. The body requires 6-8 hours of sleep daily to function optimally during the day.
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