Is your phone hurting your sleep?

Is your phone hurting your sleep?

A school has given every pupil an alarm clock so they don’t have to use their phones in bed. Could leaving your phone improve your sleep?

The school hopes that getting rid of phones overnight will help students to get enough sleep so they are happier and more focused during the day.

Getting enough sleep is important for everyone, but it’s especially important when you’re at school or college. Sleep helps you to learn, so you’ll get more from your studies – and teenagers need more sleep than adults anyway. 

Unfortunately, your phone can damage your sleep. It’s not just that you’ll stay awake looking at it: the bright, blue-coloured light from the screen tricks your brain into thinking it’s daytime, making you much less sleepy. Luckily, there are things you can do to stop your phone from ruining your night:

  • If you can, leave your phone in a different room and use an alarm clock to wake you up. Unfortunately most schools can’t afford to give everyone a free alarm clock, but you can get one for around £10.
  • Many phones have an option to change the colour of the screen in the evening, making it more orange. This may help to reduce the effect on your sleep. You can also turn the screen brightness down to help.
  • If you do have to leave your phone by your bed, putting it on aeroplane mode overnight can reduce the temptation to check it while making sure the alarm still goes off.
  • You could also leave your phone at the other side of the room, where you can’t reach it. Not only will this stop you checking your phone in the night, it will force you to get up when the alarm goes off.
  • Always put your phone on silent overnight so it doesn’t disturb you. Most phones have an option to do this automatically at certain times of day, so you don’t have to remember to do it yourself.
  • Stop using your phone for a while before you go to bed: this gives you time to become sleepy even if your phone has been keeping you awake. 
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