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Oct 01, 2013 06:16 AM EDT

College Students Addicted to Texting Experience Sleep Problems, Study

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College freshman addicted to text messaging experience more sleep problems, according to a new study conducted by researchers from Washington and Lee University.

The researchers said that students would want to answer sms messages immediately regardless of the time. Some also sleep with their phones next to their bed. Incoming texts cause frequent sleep interruptions.

The findings are published in the journal Psychology of Popular Media Culture.

Karla Murdock, the lead researcher of the study arrived at the conclusion after asking students questions that determined the relationship between emotional well-being and sleep problems. She also asked them to reveal the number of incoming and outgoing texts they received and sent on an average, per day.

To examine the students' sleep trends, Murdock used the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index.

Murdock found that more number of daily texts was directly proportional to poor sleep and more friendship-related stress.

"These correlational findings provide an initial indication that heavy text messaging could be problematic during times of stress. Although speculative, it could be argued that text messaging is a uniquely unsuitable mode of communication for coping with interpersonal stress in close relationships," Murdock said in a press release.

Murdock also said that the shortened text language does not properly convey viewpoints during sensitive discussions, plus, it also fails to provide non-verbal cues, essential while sorting out critical problems.

 "Text messaging may carry a high risk of producing or maintaining misunderstandings and/or unproductive interactions during periods of stress. When interpersonal stress involves conflict, the conditions required for productive communication may be particularly difficult to achieve through texting," Murdock said in a press release.

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