Cell phone use at night


Using a cell phone at night, particularly bright light exposure from screens, can have several detrimental effects on sleep and mood. emphasizes that bright light exposure between 11:00 p.m. and 4:00 a.m. can suppress the release of dopamine and have other negative effects like inhibiting learning and potentially leading to forms of depression during wakefulness 1. To minimize disruptions to the circadian rhythm, it's best to avoid bright screens at night and not to worry too much if staying up late is an infrequent occurrence 2.

, a guest on the , talked about his evening routine which includes using red lens glasses and red light to avoid bright artificial light exposure. This practice benefits his sleep and reduces stimulation from screens 3. Similarly, red lighting at night can help maintain a more natural setting and limit the impact of blue light from screens 4.

Light and Mood

Andrew explains the impact of light exposure on our mood and mental health, emphasizing the importance of getting enough light during the day and avoiding bright light exposure in the middle of the night. He discusses the neural pathways involved and the detrimental effects of light exposure during certain times, particularly between 11:00 p.m. and 4:00 a.m.

Huberman Lab

Master Your Sleep & Be More Alert When Awake | Huberman Lab Podcast #2

The content engaged with on phones at night also matters, potentially more than screen brightness. Engaging with stimulating content or stress-inducing activities can be more problematic for sleep than the light emitted from the screen 5. Therefore, avoiding stimulating activities on the phone at night may be as crucial as controlling light exposure.

As a way to mitigate the impact of phone use at night, Huberman suggests using the accessibility settings on smartphones to eliminate blue light by switching to a red light filter, which can be done with a triple-click shortcut 6. Additionally, limiting phone use at night and dimming screens are practical steps for better sleep 7 8.