According to a Harvard Health Publication from the Harvard Medical School — I Say

Light at night is bad for your health. Also, exposure to blue light emitted by electronics and energy efficient electric appliances like lightbulbs may be a precise example.

Until the advent of artificial lighting, the sun was the major source of light, and people spent their evenings in (relative) darkness. Now, in most of the world, evenings are much brighter, and we as humans take this easy access for granted.

But we might be paying a price for basking in all this light. At night, light throws the body’s biological clock- the circadian rhythm- out of whack making our sleep suffer. Even worse is that research shows that it may act as a contributor to cancer, diabetes, heart disease, and obesity.

Even though not all colours of light have the same effect, Blue wavelengths which are beneficial during daytime hours as they boost attention, reaction times, and mood- seems to be the most disturbing at night. Use electronics with screens, along with energy-efficient lighting, is increasing our exposure to blue wavelengths, especially at night.

Smartphones emit a bright blue light which helps us in reading what’s on the screen even during the brightest times of the day. But the light doesn’t turn off or adjust according to the hours. It’s continuously emitted, by smartphones, laptops, televisions, and other devices as well. Blue light, which mimics the brightness of the sun, confuses your brain to thinking that it’s daytime, even during the dead of night. This stops your brain from releasing melatonin which is a sleep inducing hormone and prevents you from falling asleep. The pineal gland is typically stimulated by darkness thanks to signals from a photoreceptor known as Melanopsin, located in the retina ganglion cells. When your eyes focus on bright light long after the sun goes down, the photoreceptor sends mixed signals.

To build a healthier relationship with these devices, here are a few rules to follow:

· As the night goes on, reduce your use of electronic devices and shut them off completely about 2 hours before bed. Wind down by doing chores, practicing yoga, taking a bath, or reading before going to sleep.

· Download a red-filter app

· Change your phone’s settings to lower the brightness of your screen in the early evening.

· Keep all electrical devices out of the bedroom to avoid radiation exposure while you sleep.

It’s that simple!

Tech Lover, traveller and a passionate writer.

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