Impact of Lifestyle and Technology Developments on Sleep

Not Sleeping Enough? Here's why technology and lifestyle developments are to blame for increased sleep apnea cases. Technological and lifestyle developments are keeping us awake at night.

Did you know that you spend about one-third of your life sleeping? Or at least, you should be. In an ideal world, you would be sleeping 8 hours straight and possibly snoring. But we live in modern times, and that means we are just too busy to sleep. 

With so much work that need to be done, so many great television shows that need to be watched and so much news and gossip being shared on social media, so nobody has enough time to spend on sleeping. You must know that this is not healthy way of thinking!

Sleep is Essential, so What's Keeping Us from It?

Sleep is fundamentally important for our bodies. Without enough sleep, our mental and body health will deteriorate. It is essential for us to maintain a balance between work, play, and sleep but it is becoming increasingly difficult with so many things vying for our attention.

1. Flickering Screens

According to statistics, people spend hours in front of their televisions sets a day, with Americans taking the lead with more than four hours on average. That's more than three hundred hours a year spent staring at a television screen.

2. Social Media

Social media is another culprit that keeps people from getting their beauty sleep. The biggest reasons being Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

3. Work, Work, work

It is not just technology that is causing sleep deprivation and sleep disorders. Modern lifestyles also play a huge role in our sleeping habits. Nowadays it is possible to work from home, a great interruption into our sleeping routines. The incorporating of shifts at work also disrupts a person's sleeping routine and can cause sleep disorders. In fact, a sleeping disorder has been named after this very problem - shift work sleep disorder.

4. The Mile-High Club - They're All Sleep Deprived

passengers boarding a plane

Frequent flying is another, lesser-known, reason that modern lifestyles have caused a decline in the quality of our sleep. Jet lag has quite a few symptoms like difficulty falling asleep during a flight, disrupted sleep and loss of appetite. Although it is considered 'cool' to be a jet-setter, it has negative effects on our health that certainly is not 'cool.'

5. Smoking

Smoking is not a modern development, but it has become much more mainstream in the last decades. The effects of smoking on health and sleep cannot be ignored. A study has shown that smokers sleep less than non-smokers and the sleep quality of smokers are lower than that of non-smokers.

6. Substances with No Sustenance

Substance abuse has undoubtedly increased in the recent decades. With alcohol and 'recreational' drugs freely available (despite being illegal), the number of people using these substances has grown exponentially. These substances affect our sleeping routines severely and also lower the quality of the sleep that we do have.

Also see: Can Sleep Apnea Kill You?

Impacts Caused by These Developments

Many impacts can be noted down with their cause being all these technological and lifestyle developments.

  • The biggest impact is hands down obesity. With so many fast food restaurants to cater for a fast-paced lifestyle and so much time spent online and in front of television and computer screens, our health is being neglected. People have to worry about meeting deadlines and making their flights on time, finding time for regular exercise is taking a back seat.
  • Substance abuse can lead to a myriad of health problems, like impaired memory and organ-related diseases.

Conclusion

Considering all the impacts that technology and lifestyle developments have on our sleep, one can only wonder what will happen in the future when technology has advanced even more, and people have even less time to snooze.

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