Nation’s tech addiction causes rows in the bedroom

DESPITE experts recommending a relaxing, screen-free environment in the bedroom, tech addiction to screen time is turning the nation’s bedrooms into a battleground. New research has revealed that over half the nation (55%) regularly use electronic devices such as smartphones in bed, and 15% admit it’s their worst bed habit.

More than poor sleep


Not only are smartphones leading to a poor night’s sleep, but they are causing arguments, pushing many couples to sleep separately, or even leading to divorce, the survey of 2,000 Brits by the world’s first personalised pillow, nanu, revealed.

A third of couples confessed to arguing over this tech addiction in the bed, with those nestled between the sheets using social media (30%), checking emails (11%), playing games (11%) and reading gossip websites (6%).

Oh dear ladies

And it’s the ladies who are clocking up the most screen time at unsocial hours, with 57% admitting they use their phone or tablet in bed, 33% of them scrolling through social media and 5% browsing gossip websites.

Inability to switch off from work keeps young professionals up, with 14% of those in full-time employment feeling pressurised to check work emails just before they go to sleep.

Night-time disagreements

Can't sleep

The new survey identified the main causes of night-time disagreements, with the most argued about habits being snoring (42%), using technology (23%), duvet hogging (19%), tossing and turning (16%), and sleepwalking or talking (9%).

Couples are going to drastic lengths to resolve their sleep problems with over half admitting they have slept in a separate bed or room to avoid conflict, a quarter saying they have woken their other half up, and over 75% have thrown an object at their partner or kicked them.

A difference in requirements?

One reason for the nation’s bedtime arguments is disagreements over the ideal sleep setting. How a sleep environment is personalised, including temperature, light, pillows and music all affect a partner’s ability to sleep.

Forty per cent of the UK say they need complete silence and darkness to sleep, yet 11% listen to music or books in bed, 12% fall asleep with the TV on, and 3% leave the light on.

What do the experts say?

Leading psychologist, Dr David Holmes, commented: “Thirteen per cent of the nation are arguing oversleep almost every night, suggesting we are not finding a peaceful sleep environment. Exposure to the blue light from the TV, computer or phone screens just before sleep will suppress melatonin and delay drifting off, suggesting a screen-free zone in the bedroom is optimal for sleep.

Although much of the science of how we sleep is beyond our control, there are things within our control that help us drift off into a satisfying sleep. Darkness is our friend at night, and even the low light of a clock or streetlight through a curtain may tell our bodies it is still daytime and reduce the much-needed release of melatonin. Blackout curtains are ideal for city bedrooms and are worth their weight in gold during summer.”

Justin Young, a spokesperson for nanu, commented: “The survey has shown us that over 85% of the nation say their partner has bad bed habits and 30% are arguing over technology in the bedroom – with social media being one of the main reasons for this.

Couples are unable to agree on the perfect sleep environment and are regularly arguing and keeping each other awake. Sleep is extremely personal to each individual, from the room’s temperature to the firmness of their pillow. Couples should attempt to personalise their sleep environment without disrupting the routine of their partner to maintain a happy and healthy sleeping relationship.”

The Nation’s Worst Bed Habits

  1. Tossing and turning
  2. Snoring
  3. Looking at the phone
  4. Watching TV in bed
  5. Hogging the duvet
  6. Falling asleep with the TV on
  7. Keeping the bedroom door open
  8. Eating in bed
  9. Accidentally kicking partner
  10. Keeping a light on

Top 10 Most Argued About Bed Habits

  1. Snoring
  2. Hogging the duvet
  3. Tossing and turning
  4. Using tech devices
  5. Falling asleep with the TV on
  6. Accidentally kicking partner
  7. Listening to music
  8. Leaving the bedside light on
  9. Eating in bed
  10. Sleep talking

Calculate your sleep score

Want to find out your sleep score? Complete this fun quiz from nanu and see what it says about you.

Calculate your sleep score


  • Life Love and Dirty Dishes

    April 2 at 12:27 pm

    I’m quite good at restricting my screen time. I vowed to read more so use the time to read a book. We also don’t have a TV in our bedroom. That said the first thing I do when I wake up is reach for my phone!

    1. IamMummyMatters

      April 2 at 7:32 pm

      Haha you have just described me exactly, I turn my phone off in the bedroom and we do not have a tv but as soon as I wake in the morning I turn it on and read up on emails, news etc.

  • dear bear and beany

    April 3 at 3:14 pm

    We haven’t had a tv in a room for years and I wouldn’t change that. I also love to read at bedtime and once I’ve made the decision to go up to bed, I don’t look at my phone.

    1. IamMummyMatters

      April 5 at 1:57 pm

      Same here, I think it’s over 9 years since we had a tv in our room and I don’t miss it.

  • Claire – The ladybirds adventures

    April 4 at 3:56 pm

    We don’t have a tv in our bedrooms but I do check my phone first in the morning. I keep meaning to change!

    1. IamMummyMatters

      April 5 at 2:05 pm

      It’s difficult to not reach for it when you wake up, isn’t it? I used to do it to check the weather forecast but then I get drawn into social media and emails.

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