It’s no secret that many of us struggle to get enough hours of sleep each night. The world we live in requires us to be on almost every hour of the day. When you don’t receive a ping on Slack from your co-workers, you think about the SMS bank you need to reply to. At this point, we’re browsing TikTok to relax.
Yet sleep is essential for us to function. It can help improve your focus and concentration, keep your heart healthy and your immune system strong, and take care of your mental and emotional well-being as well.
A recent study found that at least 20% of UK adults do not get enough sleep and 66% say poor sleep negatively affects their mental health. And more than a third of American adults sleep less than seven hours a night on average, according to the Sleep Foundation.
Adults need about seven to nine hours of sleep a day, and the trick to getting there may be simpler than you think. The answer: An hour or two before bedtime, just put your phone in Bedtime, Do Not Disturb, or Airplane mode. This will prevent notifications, texts, and calls from reaching your phone and often turn the color of the phone to grayscale, which can make using the phone before bed less tempting. With notifications turned off, it will also lead to fewer distractions before bed as well as fewer distractions if you wake up in the middle of the night and check your phone to see the time.
“Putting our phones on Do Not Disturb, or turning them off completely, can sometimes feel like we’re missing out,” says the sleep coach. Tracy Hannigan. “However, it allows us to no longer miss our own life in the real world after the day slows down, especially when we fall asleep.
“Benefits of putting your phone on DND at night include a reduction in the temptation to check the phone for notifications, resulting in less light intrusion which can affect melatonin production, but more importantly a reduction in mental arousal. There’s rarely a real need to scroll through social media at 2 a.m., and a sense of urgency to do so can keep you awake, no matter how upset you might feel seeing the content on your feed. news.
The grayscale enabled by the Do Not Disturb setting is particularly important because it isn’t as intense as the blue light emitted by colored screens, which can be harmful to watch in the middle of the night.