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TV or computer use in evening can disrupt sleep


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ADMIN NOTE Sleep disruption from computer use is a real thing. If your sleep is poor and you want it to be better, STAY OFF THE COMPUTER AT NIGHT.

 


 

I've found computer use in the evening disrupts my sleep. If you have sleep problems, turning off the computer a couple of hours before bedtime may help.

 

This is from a recent report from the National Sleep Foundation:

 

National Sleep Foundation Releases Annual Sleep in America Poll

Exploring Connections with Communications Technology Use and Sleep

 

WASHINGTON, DC, March 7, 2011 – The 2011 Sleep in America® poll released today by the National Sleep Foundation (NSF) finds pervasive use of communications technology in the hour before bed. It also finds that a significant number of Americans aren't getting the sleep they say they need and are searching for ways to cope.

 

Many Americans report dissatisfaction with their sleep during the week.

The poll found that 43% of Americans between the ages of 13 and 64 say they rarely or never get a good night's sleep on weeknights. More than half (60%) say that they experience a sleep problem every night or almost every night (i.e., snoring, waking in the night, waking up too early, or feeling un-refreshed when they get up in the morning.)

 

....

Communications technology use before sleep is pervasive.

Americans report very active technology use in the hour before trying to sleep. Almost everyone surveyed, 95%, uses some type of electronics like a television, computer, video game or cell phone at least a few nights a week within the hour before bed. However, baby boomers (46-64 year olds), generation X'ers (30-45 year olds), generation Y'ers (19-29 year olds) and generation Z'ers (13-18 year olds) report very different technology preferences.

 

About two-thirds of baby boomers (67%) and generation X'ers (63%) and half of generation Z'ers (50%) and generation Y'ers (49%) watch television every night or almost every night within the hour before going to sleep.

 

"Artificial light exposure between dusk and the time we go to bed at night suppresses release of the sleep-promoting hormone melatonin, enhances alertness and shifts circadian rhythms to a later hour—making it more difficult to fall asleep," says Charles Czeisler, PhD, MD, Harvard Medical School and Brigham and Women's Hospital. "This study reveals that light-emitting screens are in heavy use within the pivotal hour before sleep. Invasion of such alerting technologies into the bedroom may contribute to the high proportion of respondents who reported that they routinely get less sleep than they need."

 

Computer or laptop use is also common. Roughly six in ten (61%) say they use their laptops or computers at least a few nights a week within the hour before bed. More than half of generation Z'ers (55%) and slightly less of generation Y'ers (47%) say they surf the Internet every night or almost every night within the hour before sleep.

 

"My research compares how technologies that are ‘passively received' such as TVs and music versus those with ‘interactive' properties like video games, cell phones and the Internet may affect the brain differently," says Michael Gradisar, PhD, Flinders University (Australia). "The hypothesis is that the latter devices are more alerting and disrupt the sleep-onset process. If you feel that these activities are alerting or causing you anxiety, try doing something more ‘passive' to help you wind down before bed."

 

Generation Z'ers (36%) and generation Y'ers (28%) are about twice as likely as generation X'ers (15%) and baby boomers (12%) to say they play a video game within the hour before bedtime at least a few times a week. More than one in ten (14%) of generation Z'ers say they do so every night or almost every night before going to sleep.

 

"Over the last 50 years, we've seen how television viewing has grown to be a near constant before bed, and now we are seeing new information technologies such as laptops, cell phones, video games and music devices rapidly gaining the same status," says Lauren Hale, PhD, Stony Brook University Medical Center. "The higher use of these potentially more sleep-disruptive technologies among younger generations may have serious consequences for physical health, cognitive development and other measures of wellbeing."

 

Cell phone use, specifically texting and talking on the phone, shows a significant age gap. More than half of generation Z'ers (56%) and nearly half of generation Y'ers (42%) say they send, read or receive text messages every night or almost every night in the hour before bed compared to 15% of generation X'ers and 5% of baby boomers.

 

Cell phones were sometimes a sleep disturbance. About in one in ten of generation Z'ers (9%) say that they are awakened after they go to bed every night or almost every night by a phone call, text message or email. About one in five of generation Y'ers (20%) and generation Z'ers (18%) say this happens at least a few nights a week.

 

"Unfortunately cell phones and computers, which make our lives more productive and enjoyable, may also be abused to the point that they contribute to getting less sleep at night leaving millions of Americans functioning poorly the next day," says Russell Rosenberg, PhD, Vice Chairman of the National Sleep Foundation.

 

....

See Annual Sleep in America Poll Exploring Connections with Communications Technology Use and Sleep http://www.sleepfoundation.org/article/press-release/annual-sleep-america-poll-exploring-connections-communications-technology-use-

Edited by Altostrata
updated

This is not medical advice. Discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner.

"It has become appallingly obvious that our technology has surpassed our humanity." -- Albert Einstein

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If you are at all light-sensitive, or find your sleep is disrupted by too-late computer use, I suggest turning the brightness on your computer monitor down.

 

Also turn the brightness down on your flat-screen TVs if you watch it in the evening. Those LED TVs are very, very bright.

This is not medical advice. Discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner.

"It has become appallingly obvious that our technology has surpassed our humanity." -- Albert Einstein

All postings © copyrighted.

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  • 9 months later...

I use a program called F.lux it adjust the screen temperature the claim being it helps with sleep problems .. search for flux

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Does anyone know if this also applies to a Kindle? I just ordered one that's supposed to "read like paper". Not sure if the brightness can be adjusted, which certainly helps a lot with the computer.

Psychotropic drug history: Pristiq 50 mg. (mid-September 2010 through February 2011), Remeron (mid-September 2010 through January 2011), Lexapro 10 mg. (mid-February 2011 through mid-December 2011), Lorazepam (Ativan) 1 mg. as needed mid-September 2010 through early March 2012

"Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity." -Hanlon's Razor


Introduction: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/1588-introducing-jemima/

 

Success Story: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/6263-success-jemima-survives-lexapro-and-dr-dickhead-too/

Please note that I am not a medical professional and my advice is based on personal experience, reading, and anecdotal information posted by other sufferers.

 

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I use a program called F.lux it adjust the screen temperature the claim being it helps with sleep problems .. search for flux

 

tazziedave, did you try this because you had sleep problems? Did it help?

 

Thanks for pointing this out. f.lux is a free program here http://stereopsis.com/flux/

 

It's interesting that the inventor mentions sleep problems caused by too-bright screens.

 

Jemima, you might write the inventor. It's available for a bunch of platforms, Kindle not mentioned.

This is not medical advice. Discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner.

"It has become appallingly obvious that our technology has surpassed our humanity." -- Albert Einstein

All postings © copyrighted.

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Does anyone know if this also applies to a Kindle? I just ordered one that's supposed to "read like paper". Not sure if the brightness can be adjusted, which certainly helps a lot with the computer.

 

I have the Kindle Keyboard and it doesn't have any background illumination--you have to have exterior light to read it. That makes me think it probably isn't causing that kind of stimulation by light.

 

My biggest problem is I work late evenings in a very bright environment and have to use computers at work. I'm experimenting with amber glasses to block blue light, not sure they're helping much but we'll see.

Started on Prozac and Xanax in 1992 for PTSD after an assault. One drug led to more, the usual story. Got sicker and sicker, but believed I needed the drugs for my "underlying disease". Long story...lost everything. Life savings, home, physical and mental health, relationships, friendships, ability to work, everything. Amitryptiline, Prozac, bupropion, buspirone, flurazepam, diazepam, alprazolam, Paxil, citalopram, lamotrigine, gabapentin...probably more I've forgotten. 

Started multidrug taper in Feb 2010.  Doing a very slow microtaper, down to low doses now and feeling SO much better, getting my old personality and my brain back! Able to work full time, have a full social life, and cope with stress better than ever. Not perfect, but much better. After 23 lost years. Big Pharma has a lot to answer for. And "medicine for profit" is just not a great idea.

 

Feb 15 2010:  300 mg Neurontin  200 Lamictal   10 Celexa      0.65 Xanax   and 5 mg Ambien 

Feb 10 2014:   62 Lamictal    1.1 Celexa         0.135 Xanax    1.8 Valium

Feb 10 2015:   50 Lamictal      0.875 Celexa    0.11 Xanax      1.5 Valium

Feb 15 2016:   47.5 Lamictal   0.75 Celexa      0.0875 Xanax    1.42 Valium    

2/12/20             12                       0.045               0.007                   1 

May 2021            7                       0.01                  0.0037                1

Feb 2022            6                      0!!!                     0.00167               0.98                2.5 mg Ambien

 

I'm not a doctor. Any advice I give is just my civilian opinion.

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You would rock in these, Rhi!

This is not medical advice. Discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner.

"It has become appallingly obvious that our technology has surpassed our humanity." -- Albert Einstein

All postings © copyrighted.

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I have the Kindle Keyboard and it doesn't have any background illumination--you have to have exterior light to read it. That makes me think it probably isn't causing that kind of stimulation by light.

That's a relief. I haven't been this excited about a new toy in years, and then I thought - uh, oh.

 

My biggest problem is I work late evenings in a very bright environment and have to use computers at work. I'm experimenting with amber glasses to block blue light, not sure they're helping much but we'll see.

 

I'm sorry your work environment is so uncomfortable. The only amber glasses I've tried were the drugstore kind with magnification and I quickly put those aside. I had my near vision corrected by cataract surgery (unlike most people who go for perfect distance vision) and the magnification made things blurry. Amber lenses do help me a lot with night driving. Headlights have blinded me for the past several decades, long before I started taking Lexapro, and I've got an old pair of amber clip-on lenses that diffuse the glare and make night driving bearable.

 

Thanks for the reassurance. Now I can look forward to getting my Kindle on Tuesday. I do hope the amber lenses help you.

Psychotropic drug history: Pristiq 50 mg. (mid-September 2010 through February 2011), Remeron (mid-September 2010 through January 2011), Lexapro 10 mg. (mid-February 2011 through mid-December 2011), Lorazepam (Ativan) 1 mg. as needed mid-September 2010 through early March 2012

"Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity." -Hanlon's Razor


Introduction: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/1588-introducing-jemima/

 

Success Story: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/6263-success-jemima-survives-lexapro-and-dr-dickhead-too/

Please note that I am not a medical professional and my advice is based on personal experience, reading, and anecdotal information posted by other sufferers.

 

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You would rock in these, Rhi!

 

Oooooh. I like those. My clip-ons really do need to be replaced.

Psychotropic drug history: Pristiq 50 mg. (mid-September 2010 through February 2011), Remeron (mid-September 2010 through January 2011), Lexapro 10 mg. (mid-February 2011 through mid-December 2011), Lorazepam (Ativan) 1 mg. as needed mid-September 2010 through early March 2012

"Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity." -Hanlon's Razor


Introduction: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/1588-introducing-jemima/

 

Success Story: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/6263-success-jemima-survives-lexapro-and-dr-dickhead-too/

Please note that I am not a medical professional and my advice is based on personal experience, reading, and anecdotal information posted by other sufferers.

 

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This is not medical advice. Discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner.

"It has become appallingly obvious that our technology has surpassed our humanity." -- Albert Einstein

All postings © copyrighted.

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  • 6 months later...
  • Moderator Emeritus

You would rock in these, Rhi!

 

I just bought a pair of these from Amazon!! They are amazing. To read I wear half readers and these glasses fit over top without interfering. I've used them for the last 4 evenings as I use mu computer. All four nights I have gotten sleepy much faster and earlier and gotten off the computer to fall asleep.

 

So basically I think the bright comp. screen was stimulating. The glasses helped. It will take more trials to see over the long run if it works but for now I would say yes to getting these.

 

Will be great fishing next summer too!!!

Fall 1995 xanax, zoloft. switched to Serzone

1996- spring 2003serzone/ xanax/ lightbox.

b]Fall 2003- Fall 2004? Lexapro 10 mg. Light box /4 mg. xanax.[/b]

2004 - Fall of 2009 10 mg Lex, 150 mg Wellbutrin XL % 4 mg xanax

November 2009- Sept. 2011 10 mg lex., 300 Well. XL, 4 mg Xanax [/b

Sept.2012- July 2012 20 mg Lex 300 Well. XL, 4 mg Xanax

My mantra " go slow & with the flow "

3/2/13.. Began equal dosing 5 Xs /day xanax, while simultaneously incorporating a 2.5 % drop ( from 3.5 mg/day to 3.4 mg/day)

4/6/13 dropped from 300 mg. Wellbutrin XL to 150 mg. Difficult but DONE! Down to 3.3 mg xanax/ day / 6/10/13 3 mg xanax/day; 7/15/2013 2.88mg xanax/day.

10/ 1/2013...... 2.5 mg xanax… ( switched to tablets again) WOO HOO!!!!!! Holding here… cont. with Lexapro.

1/ 2/2014.. tapered to 18mg ( by weight) of a 26 mg ( by weight) pill of 20 mg tab. lexapro. goal is 13mg (by weight OR 10 mg by ingredient content) and STOPPED. Feeling very down with unbalanced, unpredictable WD symptoms.

1/2/2014- ??? Taking a brain-healing break from tapering anything after actively tapering something for 1.5 years. So… daily doses as of 2/2/2014: 18 mg by weight Lex, 150 mg Well. XL, 2.5 mg xanax, down from 26 mg by weight Lex., 300 mg well. XL, 4 mg xanax in August, 2012. I'll take it. :) 5/8/14 started equivalent dose liquid./ tabs. 5/13/14 1.5 % cut.

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  • 2 years later...

Do you find that using the computer or iPad causes or exacerbates the electrical sensations in the Brain?

meds tapered @ 50% under psychiatrist June 2013 to October 2014 taper Effexor 150mg, Prozac 40mg,HRT,Gabapentine 500mg tid,Lamotrigine 25mg bid, Librium 5mg qid. October 2014 reduced final med prozac 40 mg-0mg in 4 weeks! 6 weeks later major wd kicked in. Off all meds oct 2014

supplements:Omega 3 4000mg, Vit D 2000mg,March added Inositol 6g 4/ day, TrueHope EMP 2.5 caps. + GabaMax (Phenyl gaba) 1/2 tsp 2/ day, choline bitartrate 250 mg up to 4/ day. June + ltryptophan adverse reaction.

Reinstatement 1 dose 10 mg fluoxetine. adverse reaction face & chest rash the next am...related?saw my neutrons firing, felt like brain swelled or was growing. Too high dose and possible interaction w supplements.June 22,15:Update...stopped emp plus.not sure if it was helping or hindering. Reduced inositol from 24 g/ day to 6 g @ bedtime w gabamax

June 1 mg x ?days, panicked! June, reduced to .50 mg x 2 days,family freaked out, back up to 1 mg

Sometimes think I maybe reacting to meds but it could also just be continuing or new wd symptoms. Occasional rash concerns me but I'm pretty sure an allergic rash would not be intermittent?

August: Prozac 1 mg, quetiepine 6.25 mg @ bedtime, omega 3, vit d doses same. inositol 1.5 tsp w 1/4 tsp gabamax (300 mg phenyl gaba + other ingredients)

Still experiencing disabling symptoms.

Disappointed that I don't feel better being off meds as many report experiencing sx but feel better in the mind...I feel worse. Learning to cope w sx

Mid August reduced inositol to 1.25tsp,gabapentin down to 1/8 + 1/2 of 1/16 tsp (going slow as anxiety increases w each reduction)

August 28: increased Prozac to 1.5 mg hoping for some relief.

Biggest problems now are fear,anxiety,depression along w the physical weak legs and exhaustion.

Upset with myself that I was drug free and then caved looking for relief. All is not lost just because I am taking minimal doses of these drugs. Must remain strong and have faith that I can do it without the drugs...

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In the early days I couldn't cope with screens at all. It was mainly a visual thing but generally I just found them massively over-stimulating.

March 2003 took two sartroline tablets after a traumatic incident and had a reaction so stopped.  I am not sure now whether what I had for the next 18 months was WD after the reaction or the emotional fallout from the traumatic event.  Some of it was very similar to WD in hindsight.  

 

February 2014 - Took five pristiq (50mg) tablets and three Ativan and had a severe reaction.
Extreme withdrawal symptoms for three weeks compounded by visit to naturopath -

One week later took 900mg St John's Wort x 3 daily for six weeks - more negative effects and suspected serotonin syndrome - before tapering over three weeks. Last tablet late May 2014.

Waves and windows cycle of recovery with longer windows and manageable waves.

May 2015 - already in a mild wave, following a usual pattern, I took clarithromicin and amoxicillin for two weeks for a sinus infection which I also seem to have had quite a reaction to.

 

February 2016 - Feeling much better.  I still have waves and windows but they are manageable.  I'm largely enjoying life again.

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PS. I found colouring and cross-stitch a really good way to keep my busy hands and head occupied instead.

March 2003 took two sartroline tablets after a traumatic incident and had a reaction so stopped.  I am not sure now whether what I had for the next 18 months was WD after the reaction or the emotional fallout from the traumatic event.  Some of it was very similar to WD in hindsight.  

 

February 2014 - Took five pristiq (50mg) tablets and three Ativan and had a severe reaction.
Extreme withdrawal symptoms for three weeks compounded by visit to naturopath -

One week later took 900mg St John's Wort x 3 daily for six weeks - more negative effects and suspected serotonin syndrome - before tapering over three weeks. Last tablet late May 2014.

Waves and windows cycle of recovery with longer windows and manageable waves.

May 2015 - already in a mild wave, following a usual pattern, I took clarithromicin and amoxicillin for two weeks for a sinus infection which I also seem to have had quite a reaction to.

 

February 2016 - Feeling much better.  I still have waves and windows but they are manageable.  I'm largely enjoying life again.

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  • 10 months later...
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I'm going to have to move to bulkier yarn and bigger needle projects for late night knitting; the socks will have to wait for daylight hours. Good thing I have one or two projects waiting.

 

A link I found helpful/interesting: From Craig Canapari MD, is head of the Yale Pediatric Sleep Center:

Going on a Light Diet: Avoid Insomnia by Managing your Screens

 

He's posted links to apps that dim and adjust the color of screens on PCs, Macs, Android & iOS.

This is not medical advice. Discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner.
1997-1999 Effexor; 2002-2005 Effexor XR 37.5 mg linear taper, dropping same #beads/week with bad results

Cymbalta 60 mg 2012 - 2015; 2016: 20 mg to 7 mg exact doses and dates in this post; 2017: 6.3 mg to  0.0 mg  Aug. 12; details here


scallywag's Introduction
Online spreadsheet for dose taper calculations and nz11's THE WORKS spreadsheet

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