We live in a world of instant gratification. From ordering food to finding a romantic prospect, everything is a potential click or swipe away.
Whether we want our daily dose of entertainment or social gossip, our first outlet is our mobile device. This has raised concerns about increased screen time and how it affects the human body and the human brain.
Blue light effects on sleep
For example, studies suggest that constant exposure to blue light emitted from your phone can cause sleep disturbances and even damage retinal cells over time, thus causing vision problems such as age-related macular degeneration.
Is it bad to sleep with your phone?
However it’s not only what happens when you’re using your cellular device that’s a cause of concern, but what happens when your phone is in close proximity to you that has caught the attention of experts. It’s common for people to check their phones as the last thing they do before they sleep, and check them again as the first thing when they wake up.
The result? We’re keeping our phones in our pockets during the daytime and we’re keeping our cellular devices right next to our beds when we go to bed. Talk about not giving the thing a break!
This raises the question - should we be sleeping next to our phones? Are there any real health concerns that may arise from doing so? Let’s find out.
Whether you’re actively using your phone or not, it emits electromagnetic radiation. WiFi, GSM, Bluetooth, and 5G are particularly to blame. As we have discussed in our past blog posts, several studies have reported a potential link between prolonged exposure to such radiation and adverse health outcomes.
To make matters worse, sleep disturbances are one of the biggest ‘adverse health outcomes’; so snoozing next to your phone seems counterproductive to begin with!
And no, we are not just referring to the constant buzzing notifications that can lead to fragmented sleep and leave you groggy the next morning; even keeping your phone on silent or flight mode can disrupt sleep as it doesn’t stop radiation exposure.
According to a research study, keeping your mobile phone near your pillow was positively associated with poor sleep quality. So it’s better to be safe rather than sorry and keep your device slightly away from you when you’re sleeping.
How far should I keep my phone when sleeping?
Radiation intensity decreases with increasing distance, but there is no general consensus on the matter. Experts believe at least an arm's length or 2 arm's lengths away on a side table or nightstand is safe enough. After all, we don’t want you falling over trying to turn off your morning alarm!
Does flight mode or airplane mode keep you safe from harmful radiation?
Another common question along the same lines is whether flight mode reduces radiation. The answer is YES. Since services like cellular are switched off in flight mode, you are significantly reducing the radiation that is emitted.
However, flight mode is not a complete solution since WiFi or Bluetooth can still connect unless manually turned off. So completely switching off your phone is a better idea. If you don’t want to miss out on notifications during the course of the night, good old silent mode is your best bet.
Alternatively, you can opt for one of our recently launched EMF phone cases from Ferronato that have been rigorously tested to attenuate all forms of radiation thus protecting your health, even when your phone is right next to you. Using our phone case in addition to flight mode offers 99%+ attenuation and you can still use your alarm to wake up in the morning!
There you have it! Lots to consider when it comes to keeping your phone near your bed. The safest option is to keep your cellular device at a fair distance when you’re snoozing.
As discussed, there is evidence to suggest a direct link between sleep disturbance and cell phone proximity. Interrupted sleep cycles result in more than just low energy levels, mood disorders and cognitive impairment; they have also been linked with some dangerous diseases and other long-term health impacts.
As a last pro tip, we recommend establishing a digital withdrawal routine every night. Try to set aside an hour in the evening away from screens to unwind and prepare for some much-needed sleep.
It’s important to detox from the harmful blue light which tricks your mind into believing it’s still daytime and makes it so much harder to enter deep sleep.
In conclusion, keeping your phone away from you at night helps you fall asleep sooner, stay asleep longer, and eliminates the need to count sheep. As far as we’re concerned, that’s a win-win-win situation. Alternatively, you can use a more practical solution like our phone cases or covers!
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