STATES CHRONICLE – According to the latest study from the Pittsburgh University, insomnia is linked to social media use. The researchers have established that people who spend their time on social media platforms before going to bed have a bigger chance of developing sleep problems that those who don’t. Also, it seems that the same health issues apply to those who use social media frequently during the day.
A team of researchers from the Pittsburgh University reached the conclusion that insomnia is linked to social media use after studying a sample of 1,788 volunteers with ages in between 19 and 32. The participants were given a questionnaire that was created to determine the link between the use of social media and the increasing numbers of sleep disorders.
The survey focused on the most popular platforms for social media and the time that each respondent spent on a daily, or weekly basis on the site. Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram, Google Plus, Reddit, Snapchat, LinkedIn, Vibe, and Tumblr were all included in the questionnaire.
The average responded spent approximately 61 minutes in a day on one, or more platforms, and visited the respective account an average of thirty times in a single week. According to their answers, more than 30 percent of the participants in the study suffered from a sort of sleep disturbance.
Upon analyzing all of the answers, the researchers from Pittsburgh University came to the conclusion that the more time the participants spent on the platforms for social media, the more trouble they had with their sleep. The team established that those who used social media more had three times the chances of experiencing sleep disturbances than those who preferred to check their accounts more rarely.
On the other hand, the volunteers that engaged in exercises and physical activities in the outdoor environment while keeping their phones on the “silent” mode experienced a better sleep.
There are many ways in which social media can disturb the sleeping pattern of a user. It could disrupt the circadian rhythm due to the backlight of the devices used, the user can spend hours on a site without realizing the amount of time that has passed, thus losing sleep, or it could promote physiological, emotional and cognitive arousal like in the case of an engaging conversation.
The main problem is that the people usually enter a vicious cycle that cannot be easily escaped. They seem to have trouble going to sleep so they decide to go on their social media accounts to pass the time until they feel sleepy, but that only makes them stay up later.
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