is sleeping next to your laptop bad?
Questions And Answers

Is It Bad To Sleep Next To Your Laptop?

(Last Updated On: September 26, 2022)

If your home lacks the space for a dedicated home office or computer room, you may need to keep a laptop in your bedroom. If this is the case, certain precautions should be taken to ensure the presence of a computer doesn’t keep you awake at night.

Sleeping with your head next to a laptop is sure to disrupt sleep. The LED lights of the screen and loud humming, plus notification sounds, will disturb the peace. You’ll need to resist the temptation to use your computer if it remains within reach.

Laptops are best kept out of the bedroom, and if they must be used in this part of the home, always take the time to shut down your computer long before bedtime. Also, keep it away from your pillow or bedside table, as this is the only way a laptop will not keep you up at night.

What Happens if You Sleep Next to Your Laptop?

As mentioned, sleeping in a room without a laptop isn’t always possible in today’s 24/7 society. Even if that’s the case, you don’t need to spend the night sleeping with a laptop near your head, so you should move the computer to the other side of the room.

The first danger is the potential for the computer to break. If you move in your sleep, which you almost certainly will, you may knock the laptop off the bed onto the floor, causing damage to the screen or internal electronic components.

If you sleep beside a laptop, the hazards aren’t limited to computer breakage. Here are the explanations as to why experts consider sleeping next to a laptop bad:

Bright Lights

Sleep and Biological Rhythms discusses how using electronic appliances at night, including laptops, reduces sleep quality. This is primarily due to the bright lights of a screen, which can keep us up even if we’re not looking straight at them.

Laptop screens run on blue wavelengths designed to keep us mentally sharp and alert. That’s great if you’re using your laptop for work during the day but less so if you’re trying to sleep at night.

If you must sleep next to a laptop, use a blue light filter to keep light exposure to a minimum.

Higher Temperatures

All laptops have a cooling fan to prevent the computer from growing uncomfortable hot from use. However, a fan can only do so much, and laptops will always increase in temperature over time.

So, why is heat from a laptop bad for you? We all sleep better in a cool room, with excessive heat keeping us awake, and a hot laptop on the pillow or bedsheets will lead to an uncomfortable night’s sleep.

There’s also the fire risk that comes from excessive heat. The hotter your laptop runs, the greater the risk of an electrical fire, especially when coupled with body heat and flammable cotton bed sheets.

what happens if you sleep next to your laptop?


While a computer may start running silently or humming like a sports car, it’ll eventually get louder. The hum of a laptop comes from prolonged use, as the cooling fan becomes increasingly overworked.

Laptops make other distracting, annoying noises overnight. You may receive notifications like alerts to a new email or operating system update. If you’re a light sleeper, this can keep waking you overnight.


Advance in Electronic and Electric Engineering confirms that a laptop exposes us to low radiation levels, much like a cellphone. The question is, is computer radiation harmful to humans?

Opinion varies on how much damage computer radiation does to us. Those who express concern over laptop usage believe that long-term repercussions arise from keeping a laptop too close. For example, the American Society for Reproductive Medicine links prolonged laptop radiation to decreased fertility.

Concerns over skin cancer have also been raised about laptop radiation. Regardless of whether you believe the concerns about laptops, it’s best to avoid sleeping next to one for 7-9 hours.

Psychological Impact

The main danger of sleeping with a laptop next to you is temptation. Adolescents, in particular, are prone to checking their social media accounts on smartphones and tablets long into the night.

This doesn’t mean that nocturnal screen time is only an issue for teenagers. Can you say with complete certainty that if you had a laptop within easy reach, you would be able to resist using it?

Perhaps you have a sudden thought about work, and to ease the feeling of anxiety gnawing at your stomach, you decide to check your email. You get your answer and send a reply. Then, you stay awake in case you get a response to the email you just sent.

While you have your laptop on, did you remember to pay all your bills this month? Maybe it’s advisable to check your balances, just in case. Oh, and wasn’t there a sports game that night? Let’s check the score. And hey, a quick peek at Twitter can’t hurt.

Before you know it, you could have spent well over an hour online, and you’re wide awake. You need to begin the sleep hygiene process again, which won’t lead to a good night’s rest.

How To Avoid Using A Laptop at Night

The easiest way to avoid using a laptop at night is to keep it out of reach. Shut down the computer and place it in another room. Any temptation will be tempered by the fact that you’ll need to get out of bed to reach the computer.

A restless, insomniac brain can be stubborn, though. That may not be enough to stop you from hunting down the computer and booting it up. You may need to take additional precautions.

One solution is to install an app or browser extension that blocks certain websites for set periods. This will keep you off social media, email accounts, and other online locations that disturb your sleep.

Of course, it’s easy to say, “just power your laptop down.” That’s easier said than done, though. To maximize your potential for a good night’s sleep, keep your computer out of the place where you sleep.