A new study finds it’s a bad idea to use a smartphone or a tablet computer just before bed. The problem is reportedly related to the bright light emitted by these devices’ displays.
The study, which was carried our by Australian researchers, found using smartphones or tablet computers inhibited the production of melatonin, a natural substance that helps humans enter (and stay in) sleep mode.
The result of using these devices right before bed is a lousy sleep, which means lower productivity the following day. Not getting enough sleep can also have a number of negative effects on our health, such as increasing the chances of developing diabetes and cancer.
The study’s researchers also said it’s a bad idea to keep a tablet or smartphone near the bed, since our natural tendency is to want to check for new messages and emails.
Not only does that result in the screen brightness issue, but worrying about missed communications can also raise stress levels and result in a poor sleep.
The solution, according to the researchers: put those high-tech devices away at least two hours before going to bed and don’t bring them into the bedroom.
And if you simply must check your messages late at night, do it outside of the room where you sleep — that way your brain won’t associate the bedroom with stressful work.