This simple life hack will improve your sleep AND your health

Have you heard of the harmful effects that blue light can have on your sleep?

How blue light affects your sleep

Photo credit: Jay Wennington

Blue light emitted from devices such as phones, computers, and tablets can have long-lasting and harmful effects on our sleep patterns, sleep health, and overall health. (1) Blue light stops our body from being able to make our sleepy hormone, melatonin. (1) Even people that work night shift and are exposed to well-lit workplaces such as hospitals are subject to disrupted sleeping patterns, which can adversely affect their general wellbeing. (1) Shift workers are more likely to have chronic health problems such as heart disease, diabetes, lowered immunity. (1)

How blue light affects your sleep

Photo credit: Camilo Jiminez

Sleep deprivation can negatively influence our immune system and contribute to ill health, inflammation, anxiety, and depression. (1–9) Not having enough sleep can even make us experience pain more intensely. (10–12)

How blue light affects your sleep

Photo credit: Amanda Jones

So, what exactly is this simple life hack that will help to improve your sleep AND your health?

Night-mode. Most devices these days have a ‘night-mode’ function, which limits blue light emission and changes it to a warmer, orange colour. You can set specific parameters for when, how long, and the “warmth” of the light you change it to. It’s such a small and simple change to something that has such a huge involvement in our everyday lives, but the impact of switching to using night-mode has profound benefits for your sleep and general health and wellbeing.

References

  1. Bonmati-Carrion MA, Arguelles-Prieto R, Martinez-Madrid MJ, Reiter R, Hardeland R, Rol MA, et al. Protecting the melatonin rhythm through circadian healthy light exposure. Int J Mol Sci [Internet]. 2014;15(12):23448–500. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4284776/pdf/ijms-15-23448.pdf
  2. Magnavita N, Garbarino S. Sleep, health and wellness at work: A scoping review. Int J Environ Res Public Health [Internet]. 2017;14(11). Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5707986/pdf/ijerph-14-01347.pdf
  3. Haack M, Mullington JM, Simpson NS, Meir-Ewert HK. Sleep Loss and Inflammation. Best Pract Res Endocrinol Metab [Internet]. 2010;24(5):775–84. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3548567/pdf/nihms251277.pdf
  4. Grandner MA, Alfonso-Miller P, Fernandez-Mendoza J, Shetty S, Shenoy S, Combs D. Sleep: Important considerations for the prevention of cardiovascular disease. Curr Opin Cardiol [Internet]. 2016;31(5):551–65. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5056590/pdf/nihms-817121.pdf
  5. Arble DM, Bass J, Behn CD, Butler MP, Challet E, Czeisler C, et al. Impact of Sleep and Circadian Disruption on Energy Balance and Diabetes: A Summary of Workshop Discussions. Sleep. 2015;38(12):1849–60.
  6. Grandner MA, Seixas A, Shetty S, Shenoy S. Sleep Duration and Diabetes Risk: Population Trends and Potential Mechanisms. Curr Diab Rep [Internet]. 2016;16(11):1–27. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5070477/pdf/nihms-822177.pdf
  7. Besedovsky L, Dimitrov S, Born J, Lange T. Nocturnal sleep uniformly reduces numbers of different T-cell subsets in the blood of healthy men. Am J Physiol Integr Comp Physiol [Internet]. 2016;311(4):R637–42. Available from: https://www.physiology.org/doi/pdf/10.1152/ajpregu.00149.2016
  8. Enayat M. Lifestyle Choices , Environmental Conditions , and Social Issues : A Literature Review. Univ Color [Internet]. 2019; Available from: https://scholar.colorado.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=3230&context=honr_theses
  9. Egydio F, Pires G, Tufik S, Andersen M. Wound-healing and benzodiazepines: does sleep play a role in this relationship? Clinics [Internet]. 2012;67(7):827–30. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3400176/pdf/cln-67-07-827.pdf
  10. Gerhart JI, Burns JW, Post KM, Smith DA, Porter LS, Burgess HJ, et al. Relationships Between Sleep Quality and Pain-Related Factors for People with Chronic Low Back Pain: Tests of Reciprocal and Time of Day Effects. Ann Behav Med [Internet]. 2017;51(3):1–10. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5846493/pdf/nihms830037.pdf
  11. Weingarten JA, Dubrovsky B, Basner RC, Redline S, George L, Lederer DJ. Polysomnographic Measurement of Sleep Duration and Bodily Pain Perception in the Sleep Heart Health Study. Sleep [Internet]. 2016;39(8):1583–9. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4945318/pdf/aasm.39.8.1583.pdf
  12. Irwin MR, Olmstead R, Carrillo C, Sadeghi N, FitzGerald JD, Ranganath VK, et al. Sleep Loss Exacerbates Fatigue, Depression, and Pain in Rheumatoid Arthritis. Sleep [Internet]. 2012;35(4):537–43. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3296796/pdf/aasm.35.4.537.pdf

Allied Wellness Pty Ltd
PO Box 962, Berwick Vic 3806
E: info@alliedwellness.com.au
www.alliedwellness.com.au

IMPORTANT: The information on this website does not replace a face-to-face relationship with your medical professional or healthcare practitioner. You should never delay seeking medical advice, disregard medical advice, or discontinue medical treatment as a result of any information provided in this website.