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  • Meerelle Cruz

Can Social Media Use Affect Our Sleep?

Do you talk on your phone in bed till you fall asleep?

Many people think of this as a method to unwind and relax after a long day at work, but it may not be as relaxing as you think. To gain some insight into this, the Sleep Junkie team polled 2,012 Americans, the majority of whom frequently use their phones before bed, to see which applications have the greatest impact on their sleep patterns.

According to Sleep Junkie, each participant was asked to wear a smartwatch to track how long it took them to fall asleep and how much time they spent in the REM phase of the sleep cycle, as well as provide feedback on how tired they felt the next morning after using their designated app in the hour leading up to falling asleep.

As shown in the graph below, people who spent their pre-sleep time scrolling through their 'For You' feeds only spent 14 percent of their sleep cycle in the critical REM period, which is less than half of the amount of REM sleep they should be getting. Below you can check how other apps did.

The good news is that Sleep Junkie has identified blue light emission from your phone screen as having the greatest influence, which can be decreased by switching to dark mode in your apps. Sleep Junkie also suggests that you avoid using devices for at least two hours before going to bed. Perhaps the start of the new year is a good opportunity to start new evening phone habits.

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