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Insomnia symptoms, including difficulty falling or staying asleep, frequently awakening, feeling that sleep is unrefreshing or not sound, or having daytime consequences like feelings of sleepiness, irritability, or trouble concentrating, are contributed to nocturnal light exposure. The circadian rhythms enables a consolidated nocturnal sleep phase which coincides with ambient darkness and increased circulating levels of the pineal hormone melatonin. Melatonin acts as the hormonal signal for the onset of the biological night and has been conceptualized as the factor which “opens the sleep gate”. Environmental light can phase delay rhythms of melatonin and alertness when presented during nighttime hours. A delay in melatonin onset, therefore, may be expected to be a factor contributing to subsequent delays in sleep initiation mechanisms. This may play a role in the development of sleep complaints.


What is the best way to protect yourself from blue light at night?

  • Switch your phone off at least 1 hour and up to 3 hours before you turn your bedside light off.

  • Read an old fashioned book - my favorite advice!

  • Invest in shielding technologies and reduce the brightness of your screen by at least 50%.

  • Eat a diet rich in ORAC (oxygen radical absorbance capacity) and antioxidants.

  • Use dim red lights for night lights. Red light is less likely to shift circadian rhythm and suppress melatonin.


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