Social media addicts are causing serious damage to their health with late night trawls of their favourite sites, according to the results of a new survey.
Around 2,000 people took part in the research carried out by Bedmakers Silent Night, which revealed people forego sleep or wake up in the middle of the night to check their accounts.
Medical expert Dr Nerina Ramlakhan has said she is concerned by the figures and as sleep deprivation can prove bad for your health.
She said: “Getting more sleep doesn’t just make you feel better and banish your under-eye circles. Adequate sleep is a key part of a healthy lifestyle, and can benefit your heart, weight, mind, and more, so getting more sleep really is in all our best interests.
“It’s quite concerning to see just how much people are using social media at night time. The impact on sleep is particularly worrying.
“It’s proven that the blue light from phones and tablets wakes up the brain making it difficult to wind down and fall asleep. So punctuating the night with regular social media checks is a recipe for disaster if you want to sleep well.”
Silentnight’s research found that 25 per cent of Brits never go a day without logging on, yet almost a third said they acknowledged the benefits of a digital detox, with 27 per cent claiming they felt ‘calmer’ after taking a break from social media.
What sites were the worst?
Snapchat proved the biggest culprit for sleep loss, with 68 per cent admitting they wake up during the night to check the app.
62 per cent of Instagram users also revealed they stayed up late to scroll through their feed with half saying they wake up deliberately to check their feed.
The biggest users of both networks were those aged between 16-24, and 43 per cent of this age group admitting to never going a day without social media.
But Dr Nerina feels a balance needs to be struck rather than going completely cold-turkey.
She added: “With the demands of modern day life it’s unrealistic to completely ban mobile devices from the bedroom, but people need to be more aware of the impact they are having to achieve a better tech-life balance.
“As a sleep deprived nation we’d do well to limit the amount of time we are spending on social media. Try to stop scrolling through social media 60-90 minutes before bedtime. This will allow you brain to wind down and lead to deeper, more restorative sleep.
“It is also a good idea to turn phones on silent so alerts from apps such as Facebook and Snapchat don’t disturb sleep.”
What is Blue Light?
Blue Light relates to the type of light waves emitted by the device.
The brightness has been scientifically proven to trick parts of the brain that is still daytime – which can affect a person’s ability to fall asleep.
How to prevent yourself being exposed to blue light on an iPhone
To combat the affects of ‘Blue Light” Apple has introduced a feature called ‘Night Mode’ which reduces the light on the screen which makes it less likely to catch your attention.
How to turn on night mode:
1. Open up the Settings app.
2. Scroll to the Display & Brightness section. …
3. Tap on “Night Shift.”
4. Tap on the “Manually Enable Until Tomorrow” toggle.
5. Adjust screen temperature as desired.
6. With no schedule set, Night Shift mode will automatically turn off in the morning.