Can’t Get Enough Sleep? Keep Away from Your IPad and Smartphone, Experts Suggest

By Rebecca Lewis on September 03, 2012

Upcoming bills, inconsiderate bosses, health problems, and relationship issues – are they keeping you awake and restless at night? If yes, you share the same problem with thousands of Britons. According to a survey conducted by Sleepio, 51.3% of people in Britain struggle to get a good night sleep. Between men and women, the latter are three times more likely to suffer.

Insomnia is a real medical issue that should be taken seriously, said Professor Colin Espie of Glasgow University, co-founder of Sleepio organisation. He added that 25% of sufferers had been dealing with insomnia for over 11 years.

Insomnia doesn’t just ruin your night; it also affects your daily activities. Sleep deprivation is among the factors that contribute to stress, lack of energy, anxiety, and other health problems. Previous research suggest that people who sleep for less than 6 hours a day are more likely to suffer from heart attack even if they have normal weight.

Why you shouldn’t use your iPad before bedtime

There are many things that can spoil your efforts to get a good night sleep. In one study, scientists discovered that using iPad or tablet PC before bedtime can create havoc on one’s quality of sleep. They found that these electronic devices emit light that can suppress melatonin by up to 22% (higher than the effects of watching TV). Melatonin is the hormone that regulates wake and sleep cycles, also called circadian rhythm. Their findings were published in the journal Applied Ergonomics.

Another thing that could disrupt your night is no other than your mobile phone. In a survey involving American respondents, the most common reason why they have poor quality sleep aside from crying babies and snoring partner is electronics such as their smartphones. They found that 95% of American use electronic devices an hour before going to sleep.

Avoid your mobile phone too!

Unfortunately, computers and mobile phones that are making our lives more enjoyable may be abused to the point that they’re already affecting one’s quality of sleep, pointed out Russell Rosenberg, vice chairman of the National Sleep Foundation in the US.

By now, you must be getting an idea on how to make get a good night slumber. Aside from avoiding using your mobile phone or PC tablet, here are some more tips to avoid sleeping problems:

·         Lower the brightness setting low or use a filter on your electronic gadget. There are inexpensive filters that block the melatonin-sapping blue light. You just have to bear with the not-so-intense screen colour.

·         Get a regular massage. Massage helps you achieve a good night sleep by improving blood circulation in your body, taking away stress and pain. When you feel good, you are likely to drift into a peaceful and fulfilling sleep, and wake up the next day with zeal and vitality.

·         Exercise. To reap the benefits of exercising on sleep, you should do it in the morning or in the afternoon and not at night. Otherwise, you will feel more energetic and would less likely fall to sleep.

·         Use visualisation techniques. There are self-hypnosis techniques that can help you doze off easily.  Seeking help from a professional hypnotherapist can be very helpful to perform such strategies accurately and obtain better results.

·         See a doctor. Insomnia may be an effect or symptom of a more serious health problem. It is recommended that you see your GP to know the underlying cause of your sleeping problems.

 

Source of this article:

Insomnia: Britons’ health ’at risk’ as 50% fail to get enough sleep, The Guardian

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