Be it on a podcast or elsewhere, you’ve likely heard me talk about where the smart phone needs to go at night. Yes, sure, you use the alarm to wake you up. That’s fine. But the phone goes in the drawer. Not in a nightstand.
In 2015, the Bank of America funded an independent study to understand consumer trends when it comes to mobile computing. What they found in regards to my little tip above was not good: 71% of the respondents slept with their smart phones near them, on the table or on the bed. 34% of those 18-24 slept with the smart phones on the bed.
What’s the big deal? Along with the beeps and tones alerting you to a message or email, smart phones and Ipads emit blue light.
Blue light being emitted from the screen of a beloved iPhone. How harmful could that be? Pretty harmful. Blue light has a direct affect on the secretion of hormones like melatonin—it suppresses melatonin production. Great during the day during times when you need to be alert and focused, blue light can cause an upheaval to your circadian rhythms when you’re trying to sleep. Studies have linked this effect to diseases like Type 2 diabetes and cancer.
That’s how bad it is.
What can you do?
Well, first off, don’t sleep with a smart phone in your bed. Put it in the drawer. Black out your bed room. You can invest in blackout curtains. On a budget, aluminum foil is cheap and opaque. With a roll of duct tape, you can overlap layers over your windows. An alternative that will last longer and be easy to take down and put up, tape aluminum foil over sections of cardboard.
You want it dark. The kind of darkness that exists at the end of a lava tube cave. So in addition to the phone, TV and windows, blot out that little red LED light on the smoke alarm and another other emitter of light rays.