Doctors advise on new sleep texting phenomenon
A growing phenomenon called sleep texting has become the new
technology-infused contributor to sleep deprivation, according to
doctors in America.
Technology has played an increasingly detrimental role in our
sleep patterns, as more devices go mobile and new technologies
become more addictive. A recent study from The National Sleep
Foundation in America found that of the 1,508 people who
participated in the study, 95 per cent admitted to using a specific
electronic device, such as a TV, computer, video game or cellphone,
within an hour of bedtime at least a few nights a week.
Researcher Lauren Hale, associate professor of preventive medicine
at Stony Brook (N.Y.) University School of Medicine, said:
"Communication technologies are often light-emitting, which can
suppress the sleep-promoting hormone melatonin and make it harder
to go to sleep at night."
Both the light and alert sounds from such devices can interfere
with falling asleep and staying asleep, she added.
Now, we have sleep texting as the new technology enabled sleep
deterrent, and as phones continue to get smarter, we will surely
become more addicted and more engaged with our mobile device.
A sleep doctor from the University of Minnesota Sleep Medicine
Clinic has explored the new sleep-texting phenomenon, explaining
that it is becoming an unhealthy part of many people's sleep
Dr. Mike Howell said texting while you sleep is most common among
young people who are over-extended in their lives, sleeping very
little, and who are so connected to their phones. Of the people he
has treated for sleep deprivation, he believes at least half have
The transition into sleep typically takes a few moments, but when
you are sleep deprived or taking sleep medications, being awake and
being asleep can overlap. This transitional period can have
complicated amnesic behaviours, such as sleep texting and sleep
In other words, as technology increasingly creeps into our lives,
we are shifting from traditional sleep walking and sleep talking to
technology-infused states of sleep such as sleep texting. I imagine
it won't be long until I report on sleep conference calls, as our
reliance on technology continues to grow.
Posted by Elizabeth Mewes