Lights off at night applies to screens too
Ever wake up to a text or call in the middle of the night and find yourself blinded by the screen?
Could it be the ghostly looking blue glow? No? Think again.
Today’s phones utilize LED and OLED lighting technology, which produces blue light. What’s wrong with blue light?
According to the Harvard Medical School, the blue light produced by TVs, phones, and other electronics improves mood, attention, and reaction times. This makes these devices terrific for daytime use.
At night, however, exposure to blue light can be problematic.
Blue Lights at Night – What’s the Issue?
Research shows that blue light has shorter wavelengths, resulting in the suppression of the body’s melatonin production. In a study published by the University of Toronto, the participants who wore glasses to block out shorter blue light wavelengths actually produced significantly more melatonin than those who didn’t wear the glasses.
In addition to suppressing melatonin production, other studies have discovered that blue light also suppresses delta brainwaves responsible for inducing sleep.
Still not convinced blue lights and night simply don’t mix?
Here’s what the American Medical Association’s Council on Science and Public Health had to say:
“Exposure to excessive light at night, including extended use of various electronic media, can disrupt sleep or exacerbate sleep disorders, especially in children and adolescents. This effect can be minimized by using dim red lighting in the nighttime bedroom environment.”
While they talked about “portable light-emitting devices” and didn’t mention blue light per se, the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America stated:
“Overall, we found that the use of portable light-emitting devices immediately before bedtime has biological effects that may perpetuate sleep deficiency and disrupt circadian rhythms, both of which can have adverse impacts on performance, health, and safety.”
The Plot Thickens – iPhone X the Brightest iPhone to Date
Did you know the new iPhone X emits twice the amount of stimulating blue light as previous versions like the iPhone 6? Studies performed on older iPhones and iPads already suggested the light from the devices affected the body’s circadian rhythms, but these new phones make twice as much light!
Worst of all, the new OLED screen utilizes an ultra-stimulating green color, which along with blue cue the body to be awake and alert.
What does this all mean?
There’s no way to avoid the use of technology. People aren’t going to put down their phones and turn off their TVs when the sun goes down. However, some adjustments can be made to experience less blue light at night, and technology can also be used to combat the issue.
Solutions to the Blue Light Dilemma
There are two ways to tackle the blue light dilemma and come out on top: you can utilize technology or you can adjust your habits.
If you opt for the latter, try to avoid blue light exposure as much as possible before going to bed. This means no phones, tablets, computers, or even the TV. Ideally, your environment should be dark or dimly lit to allow your body to produce melatonin.
You can also dim the screen on any device to minimize the brightness and blue light emission. If you like to read at night, most tablets and phones allow you to invert the colors, which is another way of reducing the light coming from a device.
You can also try holding your device further away at night. An LED or OLED screen that’s held six inches away will expose you to four times the amount of blue light as a screen held 12 inches away.
If you’re not keen on dimming the screen or changing your viewing habits, light filtering glasses or dimming software can help.
Orange or yellow glasses can be worn to block alerting blue and green light. However, they’ll turn everything bright orange or yellow, so to say they take some getting used to would be an understatement.
Re-Timer is a high-tech alternative. Rather than actually utilizing lenses, Re-Timer is a glass-like frame outfitted with perfectly colored LEDs designed to reset your circadian clock.
That being said, if bright orange or Star Trek style glasses aren’t your thing, Flux may be an ideal solution. This innovative software automatically changes the color of your phone, tablet, or computer screen according to the time of day.
At night, Flux will make your screen look warm like your indoor lights. During the day, everything will look exactly like sunlight once again. Simply tell Flux where you live and the type of lighting you have and it will do the rest. That’s all there is to it!
Blue light from your TV, phone, tablet or computer screen at night can be detrimental to your sleep cycle and overall health. While there are a number of devices out there designed to dim or block out blue light and solve this dilemma, Flux is by far the best solution. It’s a simple download that automatically blocks out blue light for the perfect night’s sleep. What else could you ask for?