Video games and sleep – Publication

A sufficiently long and deep sleep is necessary for us to be healthy and productive in the long term. But according to our eSports Study 2019, video gamers do not have the best sleep. To what extent the video games themselves possibly influence sleep, we have compiled in a review.

The results at a glance

Analysis of the studies showed that video games before bedtime can extend the duration of falling asleep and reduce deep sleep phases. As a result, video game players may experience increased fatigue the following day. Children and adolescents are particularly affected by this. Reasons for the negative effects include screen brightness or exposure to blue light and activation of the sympathetic nervous system through gaming. According to the study, action video games in particular lead to greater activation than comparable calmer games, which prolongs the time it takes to fall asleep.

Conclusion for practice

From the results it can be concluded that especially in the evening hours video gaming should be reduced. Especially action video games before bedtime should be avoided in order not to increase the activation of the sympathetic nervous system. Since children and adolescents in particular are affected by extended sleep times and fatigue, they need to be educated about responsible video game behavior.

If you want to get a deeper insight into the review, you can find it on our site under publications or in the journal “Somnologie – Schlafforschung und Schlafmedizin“. For those who are particularly interested, you can read our blog post Sleep in E-Sports to learn how to increase performance in gaming through a good night’s sleep.