Need Some Sleep? Ditch the Phone!

Need Some Sleep? Ditch the Phone!

Alex DeGeorge, Staff Writer

Whether you know it or not, smartphones are severely damaging towards sleep. Phones emit a blue light, which prohibits you from falling asleep.

Like any light, blue light is an invisible wavelength of electromagnetic radiation. Blue light is very unique, it has many effects on the body. One of those effects are the detrimental alterations of sleep patterns.

Speaking of sleep patterns, let’s break down what circadian rhythms are and how they work. Circadian rhythms are the body’s sleep schedule. They are naturally learned and a large indicator for the body when it is time to sleep. This is why the body correlates the sunrise and sunset with sleep.

Natural amounts of blue light from the sun help the body feel alert, stay awake (by suppressing the chemical melatonin), and raise the body’s temperature. This is satisfactory, until an excessive amount begins to enter the body.

Melatonin is a chemical in the body that naturally makes you tired. This is a big reason why you start to get tired at night, it is because melatonin is no longer stopped from reacting in the brain. However, blue light suppresses the chemical.

When blue light is taken in, in larger than natural amounts, your circadian rhythm is massively altered. The alteration is caused by you forcefully staying up later, due to the blue light. Drastic shifting of your circadian rhythm can cause metabolic disorders, heart disorders, and serious depression.

Many devices you use emit blue light. These devices include: TVs, phones, computers, tablets, game consoles, LED lights, and fluorescent lights. At least an hour before bed, you should put down these devices to prevent the damage they can cause.