Smartphones and tablets need a 'work in bed' mode

Based on materials from PhoneArena and BBC

Many of us, going to bed, re-read the news for the last time, correspond in social networks or do other things on our phone or tablet directly in bed and turn off the lights. However, this approach to the device deprives you of healthy sleep, not only because you spend time on activity instead of proper rest, but also interferes with healthy sleep in itself.


Для того, чтобы такого не происходило, нужно, чтобы смартфоны получили автоматический режим 'работы в кровати', считает доктор Пол Гринграс, профессор гигиены детского сна и нервных расстройств (Paul Gringras, Professor of children’s sleep medicine and neurodisability), принимавший участие в масштабных studies on the impact of nighttime use of smartphones and tablets on the human body. Professor Greengrass has been involved in childhood nervous disorders and sleep hygiene for over 15 years, combining medical practice and research.

According to the professor, each new model has an increasingly 'blue and bright' screen, despite the fact that, according to scientific studies, exposure to blue at night knocks down the natural biological clock and does not allow sleep. This information is not new. For the OS Android, there are a number of different applications that lower the temperature of the device's screen light, changing the typical bluish-white tint to a warmer reds night mode. Google is also aware of this issue and OS Android 6.0 Marshmallow has a special 'Night Mode' that changes the background to dark tones instead of the standard white. However, it does not filter blue, so this mode does not prevent sleep problems.

Removing blue from the screen at night is a great help for our bodies in the production of the sleep hormone melatonin. The release of melatonin allows you to doze off in time, but exposure to blue-green light waves disrupts the functioning of this system.

Professor Greenras says that phone manufacturers should be more responsible and protect people's sleep:

'These (brighter and bluer displays) are great for daytime use, but nightmare for nighttime use. There is evidence that if you work with such a screen at night, it steals an extra hour from you before falling asleep. '

And it's hard to disagree with this: we love our phones, but no one wants to lose sleep because of their fault. The problem with third-party applications like Twilight (download on Google Play) is that they are not available to so many people, they are often incompatible with specific devices and they lack the level of access to the system to demonstrate full effectiveness.

While there is an efficiency issue on Android, Apple does not support any of these apps, and users iPhone are especially prone to sleep problems if they write someone at night or just using the phone.

Greengrass says: “It's not enough to take things as they are, these devices entertain us, but we need protection from what they do at night.” Well, maybe the producers will respond to the voice crying in the desert. Wait and see.

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