However, a recent study of young people browsing their mobile phones late at night at the University of Copenhagen in Denmark found thatThe effect of browsing your cell phone before going to bed on emotional and mental health may not be as serious as we think, and it may also play a positive role..
The researchers published in the Science report (Scientific ReportsThe paper on) states: “Contrary to popular assumptions, smartphone use before bedtime is not closely related to poor mental health, which may be because smartphone use is also a social behavior, which has associated benefits to mental health.“
The data for the study came from a follow-up survey of more than 800 Danish college students. The researchers provided smartphones to college students who took part in the survey, and obtained their usage frequency through the customized software running in them, collecting data for four weeks.
According to the data, during the 16 working days (from Monday night to Thursday night), during the self-reported sleep of these young people, the software recorded more than 250000 smartphone activities, includingAnswer the phone, send a message, post or like on the social media platformWait.
At the beginning of the survey and four months after follow-up, the researchers also assessed the mental health status of these young people through questionnaires, includingLoneliness, depressive symptoms, stress level, life satisfactionAnd so on. Then, using statistical analysis to rule out potential confounding factors, the researchers looked at whether the participants’ mental health was associated with cell phone use during sleep.
Baseline data showed that participants who slept less than six hours continuously because of phone use had higher levels of stress perception and depression at the beginning of the survey than those who did not use their cell phones at night. But during an average of four months of follow-up,There is no clear correlation between sleep browsing on mobile phone and changes in perceived stress, loneliness and life satisfaction..
The researchers also noticed thatCompared with participants who did not browse their phones at night, participants who used their phones at several nights (although the proportion was not high) even showed a slight decrease in depressive symptoms from baseline to follow-up..
The study speculates that this faint change may be due to the fact that the use of mobile phones is a social phenomenon that is beneficial to mental health, and for college students, the study participants, the formation of social networks and participation in social interactions are essential to their mental health, so although browsing the phone at night may disrupt sleep, the beneficial effects of social contact may offset some of the negative consequences.
In the paper, the researchers speculated that according to other previous studies, such as a survey of 300 deep smartphone users in the United States, anxiety was related to the type of activity of browsing the phone, such asAccess to news, entertainment, consumption, etc. is more closely related to anxiety than social interaction.So the team plans to further investigate whether the type of activity that browses your phone before going to bed also has a different effect on mental health.