Sustainability made simple

5 Reasons Why You Should Turn Off Your Phone at Night

turn off phone at night
Foto: CC0 / Unsplash / Nubelson Fernandes

Our smartphones are left on virtually all the time these days. Here are five convincing reasons why you should turn off your phone at night — or at least once in a while.

Let’s be honest. If you’re like most people, your smartphone runs around the clock, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. We get it — your entire life is on there, and most of us also use our phones as alarms. But, unfortunately, this is neither good for you nor the environment, not to mention for the phone itself.

So if you’re still wondering if you should turn off your phone every now and then or at least turn it off at night, the answer is definite: Yes! And here’s why.

1. It’s Better for the Environment

Turn your phone off, it's better for the environment
Live more sustainably and turn your phone off at night in order to save energy. (Photo: CC0 Public Domain / Unsplash - Markus Spiske)

Obviously, the most important reason why you should try and turn your phone off now and again is the planet we live on.

You don’t use your phone while you’re asleep, and leaving it on during the night means it’s lying dormant, but still using energy, for anywhere from a third to half of the day (of the week, of the year…).

This constant connectivity is maintained at the expense of dwindling battery life which forces us to charge our phones more and more frequently. In the end, the greater number of charging cycles we need will in turn reduce the overall lifespan of our smartphone.

Many of us simply opt to replace our phones when the battery starts to show its age and charging becomes ever more frequent. Thus, we buy way too many new phones at the cost of environmentally destructive production processes (not to mention personal cost — phones are expensive) and only because we leave them on every night without using them.

The solution is simple: Switch off your phone at night, or at least activate airplane mode. If you normally use it as an alarm clock, why not try going back to a conventional alarm clock instead? They’re cool! Check out this one for heavy sleepers (available on Amazon**).

2. It’s Safer for You

restarting your phone lets it install updates
Restarting your phone after a period of non-use has numerous benefits. (Photo: CC0 Public Domain / Unsplash - Vandan Patel)

We constantly use an alternating array of apps on our phones, computers and tablets which create temporary data that accumulates over time. Eventually, our phones become slower and/or less reliable.

Not only for speed, but updates are also necessary because they leave your phone more secure against malware. These apps need to be updated regularly for the software to be up to date. However, some updates require our phones to restart.

This is another reason why it makes sense to turn off your phone more often: your phone will run smoother and apps perform better.

3. It Reduces Stress

Go offline to reduce stress
Sometimes we should all try to live in the moment. (Photo: CC0 Public Domain / Unsplash - Nathan Dumlao)

Do we really need to be available to answer calls and texts at all times of the day? It’s common knowledge that our modern way of being available all of the time on social media is bad for our mental health. If you’re already feeling the pressure of modern life, wouldn’t it be wiser to eliminate a few of the stress factors you know you have control over? Going offline once in a while will help you to reduce stress.

4. It Limits Radiation

Turning off your phone limits radiation
Don’t always leave your phone on and limit your exposure to radiation. (Photo: CC0 Public Domain / Unsplash - Anomaly)

Our smartphones emit radiation even when we’re not using them as long as they’re turned on. The extent of the radiation and its consequences are still highly controversial. However, experts advise keeping radiation levels as low as possible.

If this is something you’re concerned about, it’s quite simple: switching off your smartphone means zero radiation.

5. It Helps Charge Your Battery Faster

Switch your phone off while charging. (Foto: CC0 / Unsplash / Andreas Haslinger)

Try turning off your phone at least when it’s charging. For one thing, you probably won’t be using it to make calls or send texts during this time anyway. Secondly, switching your phone off lets your phone battery charge faster. This saves time, as well as electricity (and therefore cost!)

The bottom line is that switching your cell phone off at night does many things at once:

  • reduces your radiation exposure
  • adds to your phone’s battery life
  • reduces energy consumption
  • extends the overall lifespan of your phone
  • leaves you less stressed

How you turn off your phone depends on the model you’re using.

For Android phones, you simply press the off button for a few seconds; for iPhones, you need to press the side button and hold it. A slider should then appear on the screen, which you can use to turn off the device.

By the way, not everything, but much of what has been said also applies to computers and tablets.

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