Social media use could contribute to sleepless nights

Social media use could contribute to sleepless nights

CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO (KFVS) - It's no surprise that many people don't get as much sleep as they should, but now a student shows social media may play a role.

However, it's not the only culprit - and you can do something about it.

When we shut off the lights, we're all hoping for some good shut-eye.

"The good Lord made daylight and night. Nighttime, you're supposed to go to sleep," Gene Ebersohl said.

Unfortunately, that doesn't always happen.

A recent study by researchers at the University of Pittsburgh shows young adults who spend a lot of time on Facebook, YouTube, Twitter and other sites are more likely to report sleep disturbances.

"I talk to a lot of people who also seem to have an addiction to their smart phones or tablet or whatever it may be, which they check routinely throughout the night," Registered Sleep Technician at Sleep Analysts Lloyd Diamond said.

Diamond says too much screen time is only one of many reasons for sleepless nights, which result in sleepy and lethargic days.

"A lot of people say they're in a fog during the day where they can't think clearly because they don't get enough sleep," Diamond said.

According to Consumer Reports, regardless of the reason, 68 percent of Americans have trouble sleeping.

It suggests some helpful tips for our sometimes desperate search for shut-eye:

  • Use sleeping pills with caution. Talk to your doctor first because the risks might outweigh the pay off.
  • Get the right mattress and pillow.
  • Look into sleep apps and white noise machines.
  • Stick to your sleep routine.

The routine is something Diamond says can make all the difference.

"Call it sleep hygiene, where you do the right things when you're trying to go to sleep as you do before you go to work," Diamond said.

Your sleep routine could include things like having an early dinner, powering down gadgets an hour before bedtime, and ditching the naps and avoiding sleeping in, even on the weekends.

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