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Late-Night Technology Use

Discuss about the Technology and Sleep.

The last couple of decades have overseen a tremendous growth in technological innovation which has led to the production of massive electronic gadgets such as mobile phones, televisions, radio and other electronic innovations (Hysing et al., 2015). The production of the technological products has been embraced by many people across the world which in the process has changed people’s perception and also led to the excessive use of the productions. Technology, hence, has brought about psychological changes such as altering how people behave and sleep patterns among people as a result of technology use (Harris et al., 2015). The thesis of this paper is to analyze how technology has affected sleep patterns among people.

Empirical studies on the use of technology and sleep highlight the idea that most users often end up using their devices till late in the night which leads them to go to bed as after midnight or even as late as four in the morning (Lemola et al., 2015). The effect of the late night use results to a person waking up late the following day. People who sleep past midnight also get less sleep time which reduces their concentration during the day and may also lead to them sleeping during daytime to compensate for the lack of sleep (Chaput,2016). The increase in technology usage has come along with increased cases of people during the day which is by itself evidence of technology having an effect on sleep patterns (Harris et al., 2015).

Technological use may also lead to lack of sleep among users because of the prolonged habit of staying up late at night. A person may end up finding it difficult to sleep at night. Such a person is likely to spend long hours of the night doing other activities related to technology use only for them to end up sleeping for long hours during the day as a means of compensating for the lack of sleep at night. Students who sleep during the class time often admit to having stayed up late at night because of different reasons such as the use of technological gadgets (Demirci et al., 2015).

Most parents have expressed concern that a majority of their children sleep with at least one electronic product in bed (Lemola, & Grob, 2015). Other studies have also confirmed that a majority of people use their technological gadgets which are mostly phones and laptops for at least an hour before sleep (Hale & Guan, 2015). The use in some cases extends late into the night based on how interesting the activity is, therefore, altering the sleep pattern. The resulting cause of this is that most people often sleep past ten at night up to midnight because one has to allocate sufficient time for using technological gadgets prior to falling asleep (Gamble et al., 2014). There are also cases of people who find themselves dozing off in the middle of using the gadgets leading to the suggestion that their sleep patterns have been affected. The person may lack the ability to fall asleep by themselves (Choe et al., 2015).

Lack of Sleep and Prolonged Use


The fact that most technological gadgets such as the mobile phones emit light which allows users to use the gadgets in the dark has also been deemed to cause lots of problems. According to Gradisar, (2013).  The light that is produced by the hand held devices such as smartphones suppresses the production of a hormone known as melatonin which is a sleep inducing hormone ( Clark & Landolt,2017). This is what causes the individual to lack sleep as the light is both mentally and physically stimulating. Based on this research and another carried out by Hale, (2015).  Which stated that teenagers in the United States of America send an average of 60 text messages in a day, of which 70% of the texts are sent during the night right before they sleep. This goes to show the adverse effects of one of the most common technological devices on the behavioral patterns of individuals in their day to day activities (Lemola,& Grob,2015).

In addition to that, Researches done by (Hale, 2015). have shown that the tendency of individuals using their technological devices especially in bed such as the laptops and smartphones, mentally creates their working environment in bed. This is because this individuals have auto tuned their brains that they can be able to perform their day to day activities in bed. This makes the individuals alter their sleeping patens as they are compelled to do their work in their beds instead of making their minds relax and their bodies rejuvenated. According to Clark, & Landolt (2017), when we use technological gadgets in bed, we make the bed to be a place of either work, study or socializing rather than a place for rest and relaxation of the mind and body.

All these have been brought about by the stimulating effect that these technological gadgets have.  (Lemola, & Grob, 2015). Recently stated that technological devices are both mentally and physically stimulating. He later concluded that the modern human has currently biologically shifted their mindset to sleeping late due to the technological gadgets while at the same time they want to wake up very early in the morning. This meant that the human being sleeps for less than the averagely recommended 6-8 hours in a day. Research has shown that individuals who sleep for less than 6 hours a day are 50% less productive than the ones that have had at least 6 hours of sleep (Wells, & Vaughn,2013). The research that further gave light to the results that 60% of grown-ups, experience fatigue that is brought about by the lack of enough sleep every night. This has been evidenced revelation by some of the top managers that most of their employees are usually less productive in the early morning hours. This compels them to shift their focus from their normal day to day duties (Vernon, & Modecki,2015).

Stimulating Effect of Technological Gadgets

It is based on such compelling results that the national sleep foundation indicated that it is best practice to remove all technological or work materials such as the smart phone, television and the laptops from the sleeping environment. A good example is when a teenager plays games on a laptop in his bedroom, he begins to view his room as an entertainment area. This therefore will always lead to anxiety whenever he is in the room and therefore it will be hard for the tenager to get enough rest while in his room. They go ahead and state that for one to increase productivity, one has to create a conducive environment around their sleeping area. This means clearing away most of the technological systems. This is because these devices are associated with anxiety and the removal of the gadgets creates a conducive environment for rest and increase in productivity.

Conclusion

In conclusion, the discussion in the paper indeed justifies the thesis that the use of technology has altered the sleep patterns among people. The paper has provided a detailed analysis as to the different effects that have risen up leading to altering the sleep patterns as a result of technology use. The excessive use of technology such as laptops, mobile phones and televisions at night for different reasons such as communication and entertainment is one of the major reasons that has led to the changes discussed in the paper on sleep patterns.

References

Chaput, J. P. (2016). Is sleep deprivation a contributor to obesity in children?. Eating and Weight Disorders-Studies on Anorexia, Bulimia and Obesity, 21(1), 5-11.

Choe, E. K., Lee, B., Kay, M., Pratt, W., & Kientz, J. A. (2015, September). SleepTight: low-burden, self-monitoring technology for capturing and reflecting on sleep behaviors. In Proceedings of the 2015 ACM International Joint Conference on Pervasive and Ubiquitous Computing (pp. 121-132). ACM.

Clark, I., & Landolt, H. P. (2017). Coffee, caffeine, and sleep: A systematic review of epidemiological studies and randomized controlled trials. Sleep medicine reviews, 31, 70-78.

Demirci, K., Akgönül, M., & Akpinar, A. (2015). Relationship of smartphone use severity with sleep quality, depression, and anxiety in university students. Journal of behavioral addictions, 4(2), 85-92.

Gamble, A. L., D'Rozario, A. L., Bartlett, D. J., Williams, S., Bin, Y. S., Grunstein, R. R., & Marshall, N. S. (2014). Adolescent sleep patterns and night-time technology use: results of the Australian Broadcasting Corporation's Big Sleep Survey. PloS one, 9(11), e111700.

Gradisar, M., (2013). The sleep and technology use of Americans: findings from the National Sleep Foundation's 2011 Sleep in America poll. Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine, 9(12), 1291-1299.

Hale, L., & Guan, S. (2015). Screen time and sleep among school-aged children and adolescents: a systematic literature review. Sleep medicine reviews, 21, 50-58.

Harris, A., Gundersen, H., Mørk-Andreassen, P., Thun, E., Bjorvatn, B., & Pallesen, S. (2015). Restricted use of electronic media, sleep, performance, and mood in high school athletes—a randomized trial. Sleep health, 1(4), 314-321.

Hysing, M., Pallesen, S., Stormark, K. M., Jakobsen, R., Lundervold, A. J., & Sivertsen, B. (2015). Sleep and use of electronic devices in adolescence: results from a large population-based study. BMJ open, 5(1), e006748.

Lemola, S., & Grob, A. (2015). Adolescents’ electronic media use at night, sleep disturbance, and depressive symptoms in the smartphone age. Journal of youth and adolescence, 44(2), 405-418.

Vernon, L., Barber, B. L., & Modecki, K. L. (2015). Adolescent problematic social networking and school experiences: The mediating effects of sleep disruptions and sleep quality. Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking, 18(7), 386-392.

Wells, M. E., & Vaughn, B. V. (2013). Sleep technologists educational needs assessment: a survey of polysomnography, electroneurodiagnostic technology, and respiratory therapy education program directors. Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine, 9(10), 1081-1086.

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