How blue light emissions from devices affect sleep.
While light of any kind can suppress the secretion of melatonin, blue light at night does so more powerfully. Here is just one of many articles about blue light and sleep deprivation: https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/blue-light-has-a-dark-side
Blue light’s detrimental effect on sleep centers on melatonin production. Melatonin, a natural hormone that helps regulate the body’s circadian rhythm, typically elevates in the evening hours; however, exposure to artificial blue light (short-wavelength, high-energy visible light) at nighttime can trick the eyes into suppressing melatonin in much the same way natural sunlight does. This suppression is believed to correlate with wakefulness and a delayed or poor sleep cycle.
It turns out that perhaps the single biggest contributor to our collective sleep problems, is the use of artificial lighting and electronics at night.
These devices emit light of a blue wavelength, which tricks our brains into thinking that it is daytime (5).
Fortunately, this problem has a simple solution and there are a few actionable steps you can take to get rid of that blue light in the evening, potentially improving your health at the same time.
As the article states, some things that one can do are:
- Avoid looking at bright screens beginning two to three hours before bed.
- Expose yourself to lots of bright light during the day, which will boost your ability to sleep at night, as well as your mood and alertness during daylight.
If one has to use his devices within the 2-3 hours before bed then we would suggest glasses that filter out blue light; we can make these onsite in our lab.
- Using the blue-blocking glasses has major improvements in both sleep quality and mood. These glasses have also been shown to greatly improve sleep in shift workers, when they put them on before bedtime