Using your phone at night is worse for you than you think. See how!

Using your phone at night

Typically, the last thing we do before bed is plug in our phones. Just like your body, it’s important to wake up with our phone full of energy and ready for the day. And usually, when we plug our phones in, we’ll do a quick check of social media before bed. We thought this was perfectly okay, who hasn’t been guilty of nodding off to a little Netflix?

Now that people are starting to use their phones habitually before bed, we’re starting to understand the effects that screens can have on your brain and your sleep patterns. Melatonin is a sleep hormone that your body naturally produces, and when you’re exposed to bright lights before bed your body produces less melatonin. This makes it harder to fall asleep, and when you’re bored in bed you might just pick up your phone again and start scrolling. But this will only make things worse.

A lack of sleep can lead to a lot of difficulties during your day. When you sleep your brain is getting a chance to rest, but special cells called glial cells actually go through your brain at night and clean up the toxins that the neurons in your brain produce. When you let these toxins linger in your brain your attention goes down, your memory is limited, and your problem-solving abilities are hurt. Letting these toxins hang around your brain can lead to long-term cell damage as well.

Using your phone before bed can lead you to wake up with a “cellphone hangover”, meaning that your brain power is limited and your thinking is slowed down. It’s similar to a real hangover, but taking another shot in the morning won’t help you.

Your body's insulin levels are even affected, which means that in the end, you could actually gain weight by looking at your phone before bed. All of your time spent working out could be undone by a late-night tweet or scroll through Instagram!

To help fight the adverse side effects of looking at screens at night, some people suggest giving yourself an hour without screens before bed. That can be a hard thing to do when all the good TV is on late at night and when Netflix is always waiting for you. There are lots of things you can do before bed that doesn’t involve screens: Reading a book, exercising (wink wink), or listening to music can all be great tasks to burn you out before sleep.

If you are going to use screens late at night, there are a few things you can do.

To fix it, your best bet is to put your phone down entirely, but if you just can’t ditch your iPhone or Android device when the sun sets, you should at least be using these built-in features to keep your sleep cycle in check.

Blue Light Filter Apps

Most of the blue light filtering apps work similarly. They do nothing during daylight hours but after sunset place a red overlay on the screen to change its color temperature.

iOS – Night Shift

Night Shift is a feature built right into iOS on iPhone and iPad that automatically shifts the hue of your screen to warmer colors at night. By minimizing the blue light from the screen, Night Shift can dramatically preserve your sleep cycle by allowing your brain to tell you when it’s time to hit the hay. Here’s how to turn it on.

Go to your Settings menu and select “Display & Brightness” and then “Night Shift.” Here you can schedule the times when Night Shift will turn on, or just enable it by making sure the “Scheduled” tab is switched on and allow your phone’s own built-in sunrise and sunset data to control when Night Shift starts and stops.

If you ever need to pause Night Shift for any reason, you can swipe up from the bottom of the touchscreen to bring up the Control Center and then tap the Night Shift button.

Use Night Mode

Many apps, including Twitter, WhatsApp, and even Google Maps have their own “night mode” that you can enable in their individual app settings menus. These modes replace the bright white colors with darker grays and blacks, making your screen much easier on the eyes in a dark environment. Not every app has a night mode, but be sure to check the settings menu of your favorite ones to see, because it can be a real eye saver.

Leave a Comment
Previous Post Next Post

Post a Comment

Post a Comment