Electronics and Sleep Problems

This is the essay that was due in my English class today. The assignment was to find some issue related to electronics/computers/information technology/cyber culture and write a persuasive paper on ways to resolve the issue. I’m not entirely sure I wrote a persuasive paper, it may have been a bit more of an argument than a persuasion, but oh well. The first part is what my original paper was, but the assignment was only supposed to be 300 words and my first draft was 590 words, so I rewrote it and came up with 446. I like both drafts, so I figured I’d share them both. 

Electronics and Sleep Problems

               There is a stealthy scourge making its way through our country. It walks right into our homes and stations itself right in the middle of life drawing everyone in and then hooking them before they know what is going on. Then more make their way into our homes and before we even know what is going on, we are surrounded and defeated. Even years down the road, people do not understand why there is a pandemic of insomnia and sleep disruptions. Yet if they looked around their homes and saw the culprit for what it is, they would realize their televisions, home computers, video game consoles, tablets and even cell phones are the sneaky culprits that are responsible for an increasingly large percentage of sleep-related disorders.

Over the years, it has become common practice to use electronics for entertainment and to relax. Cell phones are permanently attached to some people’s hands during all hours of the day and night. More and more people spend hours each evening glued to their televisions to wind down or they play computer and video games to relieve stress from the day. But this, it turns out, is not the case. Research shows that the light emitted from the screens of electronics is responsible for a drop in melatonin levels, making it more and more difficult for people to fall asleep and stay asleep. It has been proven through a multitude of scientific studies that using an electronic device within an hour of bedtime significantly lowers melatonin, the hormone that regulates our body clock.

               The main reason behind this problem is the back light on electronic items. Melatonin is regulated based on the levels of light our bodies receive. When the sun starts to go down melatonin levels rise, telling our bodies it is time to get ready to sleep. By stationing ourselves in front of electronics and even using electronics in bed, our bodies are still receiving a signal that light is present and we do not need to start winding down. Body temperatures stay high as well as our heart rates, making it difficult to fall asleep, stay asleep or wake feeling rested.

There are several ways we can combat this issue. One way is by restricting electronic usage to early evening only. By not using electronics in the immediate hour before bedtime we give our bodies time to regulate and start producing melatonin. By the time we are ready for bed, our melatonin levels will have risen and our bodies will be in a state to allow us to fall asleep quickly and receive more beneficial rest.

If we do find we need to use electronics late in the evening or even during the night, keep the backlight at the lowest level possible. This will keep the body from thinking it is time to wake up or that it is not time to go to bed yet. Having a lower backlight has been proven to not cause as much sleep disturbance as a brighter backlight, but it still causes some disruption. If we must have the disruption at all, it is better to have it at a lower level.

Electronics are valuable time-savers that provide convenience to our lives, yet they can also create some problems. The sleep disorders that have been linked to electronic usage are very serious. If we are cautious and aware of the issues as well as develop healthy electronic usage habits, our chances of developing sleep disorders related to our electronics will decrease.

Electronics and Sleep Problems

Across the world, more and more people are finding it difficult to fall sleep or to get a good night’s sleep. The culprit, scientists have discovered, is our beloved bevy of electronic accoutrements. Electronic devices with back lights are responsible for hormone disruptions in our bodies that lead to a myriad of sleep disorders.

Over the years, it has become common practice for electronics to be used as a way to help us wind down at the end of the day. This belief, however, is far from reality. Research shows that the light emitted from the screens of electronics is responsible for a drop in melatonin levels, making it more and more difficult for people to fall asleep and stay asleep as well as raising anxiety levels. It has been proven through a multitude of scientific studies that using an electronic device within an hour of bedtime significantly lowers melatonin, the hormone that regulates our body clock.

Melatonin is regulated based on the levels of light our bodies receive. When the sun starts to go down melatonin levels rise, telling our bodies it is time to get ready to sleep. By stationing ourselves in front of electronics and even using electronics in bed, our bodies are still receiving a signal that light is present and we do not need to start winding down. Body temperatures stay high as well as our heart rates, making it difficult to fall asleep, stay asleep or wake feeling rested.

One way to combat this issue is by restricting electronic usage to early evening only. By not using electronics in the immediate hour before bedtime we give our bodies time to regulate and start producing melatonin. By the time we are ready for bed, our melatonin levels will have risen and our bodies will be in a state to allow us to fall asleep quickly and receive more beneficial rest.

If we do find we need to use electronics late in the evening or even during the night, keep the backlight at the lowest level possible. Having a lower backlight has been proven to not cause as much sleep disturbance as a brighter backlight, but it still causes some disruption. If we must have the disruption at all, it is better to have it at a lower level.

Electronics are valuable time-savers that provide convenience to our lives, yet they can also create some problems. The sleep disorders that have been linked to electronic usage are very serious. If we are cautious and aware of the issues as well as develop healthy electronic usage habits, our chances of developing sleep disorders related to our electronics will decrease.