Cellphones are screwing your kid’s sleep even if they’re not using it

It’s not surprising to find that cellphones, computers and other electronic devices keep kids and teens awake at night. In fact, these gadgets are to be blamed for the growing number of yawning students who spent the night taking selfies and playing online games. But a new research has found that it’s also screwing their slumber even if they’re not using it.

Cellphones are screwing your kid’s sleep even if they’re not using it

In the paper published in JAMA Pediatrics on Monday, a team of researchers concluded that cellphones and other screen devices contribute to reduced sleep quality and quantity. The findings of the study also showed that 72% of children and 89% of adolescents have at least one device in their sleep environment and most of them use it near bedtime.

To arrive at the conclusion, researchers led by Dr.Ben Carter, a biostatistics senior lecture at King’s College London, analyzed hundreds of relevant studies of kids and teens aged 6 to 19. Out of the hundreds of studies carried out between January 1, 2011 and June 15, 2015, they chose 20 reports involving 125,198 children.

Their findings showed that there was a “strong and consistent association” between bedtime media device use and poor sleep quality, insufficient sleep quantity as well as excessive daytime sleepiness.

Interestingly, the research team also found that kids who didn’t use their devices in their sleep environment still suffered sleep interruption and are likely to experience the same problems. They discovered that the content of the device as well as the sounds and light emitted were too stimulating.

According to Carter, light emitted from the devices may negatively affect the circadian rhythm that influences our internal clock timing of biological processes such as hormone release and body temperature.

Moreover, they suggested that online content may be psychologically stimulating for children and adolescents, enough to keep them awake for the past hour after they turn of their devices and try to sleep.

Experts suggest to remove items in the bedroom that can interrupt sleep such as electronic devices, TV and even pets to facilitate good, continuous and sufficient amount of sleep.

--Mini, The Summit Express

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