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Too Much Cell Phone Time Takes Toll on Teen Sleep
Date:6/9/2008

Study found excessive use made adolescents more sleepy, restless and stressed

MONDAY, June 9 (HealthDay News) -- Teens who become addicted to their cell phones may be placing their health at risk by compromising their ability to sleep well, a new Swedish study suggests.

The finding was presented Monday at the Associated Professional Sleep Societies annual meeting, in Baltimore.

"The message is that adolescents who use their cell phones excessively are much more stressed, much more restless, much more fatigued, and have a greater tendency to develop sleep deprivation as a result of their calling habits," said study author Dr. Gaby Bader, an associate professor in the department of clinical neuroscience at Sahlgren's Academy in Goteburg.

Bader said he was "quite surprised" by the strength of the correlation between teen cell phone use and sleep problems. And, he pointed out, the current study is only one part of a broader ongoing effort to assess the impact of numerous forms of technology on adolescent sleep, including computers and handheld e-mail devices.

With respect to cell phones, he and his team focused on the experiences of 21 healthy Swedish boys and girls between the ages of 14 and 20. The teens kept what the authors described as "regular working/studying hours" and were not previously diagnosed with any particular sleep irregularity.

Based on self-reports, participants were divided into two groups: those sending or receiving five calls and/or short text messages (excluding e-mails) a day, and those using their cell phones 15 times or more on a daily basis.

Bader pointed out that while the average number of calls/texts per day hovered between 35 and 40, some of the above-15 call users used their cells with a frequency far more excessively -- approaching, at times, more than 200 calls and/or texts a day. Among all participants, only one reported turning off their cell phone at ni
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