You’re lying in bed, exhausted after a long day. All you want is to sink into your pillow and slip off into a deep, peaceful slumber. Instead, your mind is racing. You just can’t seem to calm down and get those Z’s. This is one of the most torturous feelings! While there are many different factors that could lead to this, there’s one that may be easier to remedy than you think; reduce the Blue Light.
Blue Light plays a significant role in our circadian rhythm. Because Blue Light exists naturally in abundance from the sun, our biology is primed to interpret Blue Light as daytime– time to be awake! This mechanism works through our eyes. The retina sends a signal to the hypothalamus in our brain. The hypothalamus communicates with the suprachiasmatic nucleus, which in turn activates or deactivates the pineal gland, which produces melatonin.
Melatonin, the hormone that reduces our alertness and invites sleep, is only produced in the absence of light by the pineal gland. Although, to some extent, our body will attempt to retain the circadian rhythm, the pineal gland will cease melatonin production after even one second exposure to blue light wavelengths.
- Working on your laptop burning the midnight oil? No melatonin.
- Watching TV while you fall asleep? No melatonin.
- Checking Facebook one last time in bed? No melatonin.
Numerous studies have shown that mammals, such as humans, have peak sensitivities in the blue region of the visible spectrum ranging from 459 to 484nm. For example, a study performed at Bringham and Women’s Hospital showed that use of e-readers prolongs the time it takes to fall asleep. The common light bulb ample amounts of this Blue Light; especially the new white LED lights. Tablets and smartphones are culprits of radiating this light range as well.
The good news; a simple solution is coming soon. You don’t have to”go dark” at 7pm or start reading books by candlelight. Instead, PupilBox’s visual lifestyle system will come equipped with the Pupilbulb’ a low-blue light emitting light bulb for your bedside lamp. In addition, we are developing sleep lens for our stylish frames that reduce the blue light even more. Your body will know the sun has set and it’s time to produce the melatonin.