Compulsively Check Facebook? It May Be Because You're Sleep-Deprived

Now this is weird.

You know all those people who are constantly checking Facebook and Instagram and Twitter and all those other texting sites?

Well, they're not just annoying.  They may be sleep-deprived.

It's an odd correlation but a new study links compulsive Facebook checking to lack of sleep.

Say what?

Apparently, University of California, Irvine, researchers have found that, if you find yourself toggling over to look at Facebook several dozen times a day, it’s not necessarily because the experience of being on social media is so wonderful. It may be a sign that you’re not getting enough sleep, according to

n a recently completed study, researchers at the University of California, Irvine demonstrated that lack of sleep – in addition to affecting busy college students’ moods and productivity – leads to more frequent online activities such as browsing Facebook.

“When you get less sleep, you’re more prone to distraction,” says lead researcher Gloria Mark, a UCI informatics professor. “If you’re being distracted, what do you do? You go to Facebook. It’s lightweight, it’s easy, and you’re tired.”

Mark says there have been lots of studies on how information technology affects sleep. "We did the opposite: We looked at how sleep duration influences IT usage,” says Mark, who will present the findings at a leading computer-human interaction conference in May.

Mark says the study’s findings show a direct connection among chronic lack of sleep, worsening mood and greater reliance on Facebook browsing. She also found that the less sleep people have, the more frequently their attention shifts among different computer screens, suggesting heightened distractibility.


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