29 Nov Electronic devices and sleep
One other reason teens are not getting as much sleep as they need is their phones and other digital devices. Screens emit blue light which interferes with the release of melatonin. Melatonin is the chemical your brain releases to tell you that you are tired. But it doesn’t get released when you are exposed to bright light and especially blue light. (That’s why when the sun comes up you start to wake up.) When you use your phone in bed, you are messing with your body’s melatonin release which makes it harder to go to sleep.
iPads, cell phones and computers also keep you up by distracting you. Many teens report climbing into bed at a reasonable hour and then staying up late because they become engaged with something on their phone: a game, a group chat, video surfing, you name it. Combine that with the blue light emission and you are setting your self up for a much later sleep time.
So, when you make your bedtime routine as described in the last sub-post make sure turning off your phone well before you climb into bed is part of that routine. Do NOT under any circumstances sleep with your phone under your pillow or in a place where incoming texts or emails will disturb your sleep. Texting and phone use late at night is becoming an increasingly large contributor to sleep deprivation in teens. The amount of work you have for school and sports already puts you at risk for sleep deprivation. Don’t add to it voluntarily by keeping your phone on at night.
If you are having some issues getting a good night’s sleep after trying some of the ideas in these sub-posts, definitely talk to your parents and consider seek ing professional help. A good night’s sleep is critical to your overall health. Don’t under-estimate just how important it is.
Have you ever had sleep related retrograde amnesia? If so, share what happened.