Technology Affecting Children's Sleep

(Joplin, MO) -- Technology certainly makes paying the bills and even checking movie times easier, but how is it affecting children's sleep?

A study done by the National Wildlife Federation shows the hours a day kids are playing outdoors has drastically decreased.

"Like six hours out of my day," McAuley Catholic High School senior Kimberly Carlton says.

"More than ten hours a day," McAuley Catholic High School senior Jesse Adams says.

"Like eight or nine hours a day collectively which is probably pretty embarrassing," senior at McAuley Catholic High School

Lindsey Klunk says.

That's the number of hours these kids are spending using technology.

Is seeing thumbs quickly moving, half listening, and beeping going off look familiar?

"My cells phones like its just become such an important part of my life like its always next to me it's in my pocket on my desk in my person somewhere around me at all times," Klunk says.

A new study shows that Missouri teens and kids are using some form of technology, whether it's watching T.V., being on the computer or texting, seven to eight hours a day.

"It's a stimulant, its a photo stimulant if you will computer screens cellphone whatever," Jeff Keener Director of Freeman Respiratory Services says.

Jeff Keener says using technology right before bed can disrupt students sleep patterns and negatively effect their ability to do school work or focus.

"These are things that make your mind busy and if you go to bed with your mind busy it takes you longer to fall asleep," Keener says.

"I won't get that great night of sleep because ill be up and down texting back and forth," Carlton says.

"I'll be doing homework assignment and ill get a text it will distract me yes," Adams says.

Keener recommends powering down and not using electronics an hour before bed time, which these kids say might be hard to do.

Another problem with kids not being able to pull themselves away from technology, is sleep debt.

That's a culmination of all the hours they should be getting and it can cause irritability and impair your memory.

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