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How to stop mindlessly scrolling and get some sleep: Mom Minute Monday

How many times do you get into bed exhausted, only to spend countless minutes scrolling on your device? We talked to an expert about how to stop this bad habit.

CLEVELAND — You rush around all day and are exhausted

But when it's finally time to go to bed and get some sleep -- you instead start mindlessly scrolling through social media on your phone.

A new report gives it a name -- "revenge bedtime procrastination."

In today’s Mom Minute Monday, 3News’ Maureen Kyle talked to local sleep expert, Dr. Michelle Drerup with the Cleveland Clinic, about why we do it -- and what we can do to stop.

"This is our time where we can lay down in bed and we have a few minutes," Maureen says, "but what does that do when we are sacrificing sleep to scroll on the internet?"

Dr. Drerup says this habit was common pre-pandemic but she's hearing even more about it now.

"It became kind of that time of, 'this is my quiet time and I can actually have a moment where I'm not working, I'm not doing things around the house, the kids aren't bothering me,' says the doctor. 

"But it definitely has escalated with the pandemic in part because we're missing that social connection, in part because we don't have a differentiation of home and office."

Dr. Drerup says we do it without realizing it and it's part of a larger issue.

"It's definitely a kind of crisis in our society with not getting enough sleep. It affects our mental health, our emotional health, our physical health, in many ways."

Dr. Drerup says there are some things we can do to help stop this habit. One strategy is to get into a bedtime routine, much like we have for our children.

"Thinking about it as our technology needs a bedtime just like we need a bedtime," says the doctor.

She also says if you're going to use technology once you get in bed, give yourself a time limit. For example, let yourself have 10 minutes of 'scrolling time.'

You can also use technology to your advantage by setting up the sleep tracker function on your phone or smart watch, to tell you when to start getting ready for bed.

Another thing many of us do is use our phone as an alarm -- but that makes it so tempting to grab it and start scrolling.

Dr. Drerup suggests getting an actual alarm clock and putting your phone somewhere out of reach.