Binge Watching TV Shows Leads to Insomnia and a Poorer Sleep Quality

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If yes, then according to a recent study you could be seriously risking your health in the process.

Most of the participants (81 percent) reported that they engage in marathon TV viewing. This can be done on a television, laptop, tablet, computer or smartphone.

The study involved 423 young adults who were 18- to 25-years-old, with an average age of 22 years. Finally, cognitive and somatic arousal before going to sleep was assessed using the Pre-Sleep Arousal Scale.

Most of the time, binge-watching occurs unintentionally. Of these, more than 20 percent had engaged in binge-viewing at least a few times per week in the month prior to the study.

Research conducted by the University of Michigan (UM) and the Leuven School for Mass Communication Research in Belgium found that higher binge-viewing frequency leads to poorer sleep quality, more fatigue and increased insomnia.

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Participants indicated they slept, on average, seven hours and 37 minutes but those who binge-viewed suffered poorer sleep quality and more tiredness. Regular television watching was not associated with any of these. In the abstract, the researchers pointed out that watching multiple episodes of on-demand television shows can excite viewers, decreasing their ability to sleep.

Additionally, "Cognitive pre-sleep arousal fully mediated these relationships", the researchers write, suggesting that being kept mentally alert may be the reason why binge-watching has such a negative effect on sleep. Binge viewing is when people watch an excessive amount of the same TV programme in one sitting. The researchers observed that a large part of the trend is the good quality of the shows being put out. According to some experts, watching TV with friends or family might improve TV viewing habits asking them more enjoyable and less of an encroachment into sleep habits.

If your weekend is now based around you binge-watching a new series on Netflix, then you may want to rethink your plans as it turns out it's unsurprisingly not great for your sleep schedule. "This intense engagement with television content could require a longer period to "cool down" before going to sleep, thus affecting sleep overall". But this habit could be detrimental to the quality of your sleep, warn scientists in a new study published in The Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine.

"Bingeable TV shows have plots that keep the viewer tied to the screen".

"Bingeable TV shows have plots that keep the viewer tied to the screen", Exelmans said in a University of MI press release. This should help them calm down and gradually improve their sleep quality.