While they sleep, some students snore. Some dream. And a growing number text.
Sleep texting has recently become a phenomenon worthy of attention in student and professional press circles.
It has joined sleepwalking, sleep paralysis, and old-fashioned nightmares as one of the more common things that occur while undergrads and others are grabbing some shuteye.
In an early December report, The Lantern at Ohio State University explained, “Sleep texting is as simple as it sounds: a person will respond or send out a text message in the middle of their sleep. Most people who do this usually do not remember doing it and it usually doesn’t make much sense.”
For example, a University of Georgia senior told The Red & Black student newspaper last semester, “I’ve done it several times before and they’ve been coherent and incoherent. One time, I accidentally asked for a pizza.”
One possible cause of this slumbering text craze: the ubiquity of high-tech gadgets and gizmos among the young. More and more, snuggling in bed with a mobile phone is as normal an activity as playing Angry Birds before class.
“Many people, especially young adults, feel a sense of attachment to their phones and view the devices as a social lifeline that they can’t do without, even when the anxiety the phones produce keeps them up at night,” The Chronicle of Higher Education reported in November.
“Scott W. Campbell, an associate professor of communication studies at the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor, said students feel attached to their phones to the extent that they couldn’t give them up if someone asked them to.”
While sleep texting seems like little more than a quirky offshoot of this extreme mobile attachment, it has the potential to result in stress, sleeplessness, and even subsequent depression.
The bottom line, a psychology professor and sleep expert explained to The Daily Planet at Canada’s Humber College, “People should not have their devices in the bedroom, next to them, on. It just should not happen. You should not be accessible. You should value your sleep-self and have these devices out of the room, or at least turned off. The moral of the story is don’t do it.”
What do you think? Are you a sleep texter? Do you keep your mobile phone by your bedside? And what is the craziest message you or your friends have ever texted while falling asleep or fully unconscious?
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