Your Social Media Addiction Is Seriously Affecting Your Sleep

According to a new study done at the University of Pittsburgh, the reason we’re all losing sleep is in fact due to our unhealthy obsession with social media.

Using any LED screen before bed, whether it be from your iPhone, your Netflix-streaming laptop screen, or an actual tv, is already known to prevent you from sleeping properly. But did you know you can mess up your sleeping schedule at any point during the day, just by using your phone?

You’re probably guilty of judging one of the many Instagram girls who posts six times a day; breakfast, lunch, dinner, their adorable kitten, some sort of scenic view and of course, a selfie. Yet, science has just proven, it doesn’t matter how much you post, but how often you check other people’s posts, or how often you scroll through your newsfeed.

After surveying 1,788 people from ages 19 to 32, the study published through Preventive Medicine shows the average young adult uses social media a total of 61 minutes a day (and let’s be real, it’s often times more than that). This means checking a variety of social media accounts 30 times a week. Findings showed nearly 30% of the people studied did, in fact, have trouble sleeping.

I constantly find myself, by force of a bad habit, immediately opening the Instagram app each time I grab my phone. My original intent is always to read my new messages, call somebody back, or even Google something, but I always end up on Instagram, looking at profiles of people I’ve never met in real life, unsure of how I got there.

Are you constantly lurking on your ex’s tagged photos? Or creeping 72 weeks into his new girlfriend’s profile? “If this is the case, then interventions that counter obsessive ‘checking’ behavior may be most effective.” Jessica C. Levenson, a postdoctoral researcher involved in the survey, says.

If you need an even better reason to stop stalking your ex via social media, think about the hours of sleep you could very well be gaining by cutting down on this addictive habit. Turn off your notifications on Instagram so you can stop obsessing over who liked your last selfie. Try not to post to your Snapchat story at every waking moment so you can quit suffering from FOMO while checking everyone else’s stories. More social media consequently means less sleep, even if you’re just checking your phone as you wake up.

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