Blue Spectrum Light

adminInsomnia, Mental Health, Sleep Leave a Comment

Blue spectrum light, as emitted by electronic screens of all kinds disrupts sleep patterns and circadian rhythms when they are used in the evening and at night.  These disruptions are especially problematic for people with mood disorders, who often experience difficulty sleeping and maintaining regular daily schedules of activities.

We recommend blue light blocking glasses that block at least 90% of the blue-spectrum light encountered.  Many mass-market blue light blocking glasses don’t measure up to this standard, so check before buying.  Psychiatric Times recommends as one good source, or Uvex for somewhat less expensive models.

Sleeping in a pitch-dark bedroom, with all light, even small battery-charger LED’s, completely blocked is another choice that seems to help many people.  For those uncomfortable with a pitch-dark bedroom, “blue-free” nightlights and flashlights may be helpful.

Many electronic devices, like laptops and tablets now include amber screens to be used after natural dark falls, but these only affect the screen you’re looking at, and cannot block other sources of blue light in your environment.

Some people, finding the blue-light blocking glasses to have a calming effect like to wear them for relaxing periods during the day, but experience has shown that this can increase the risk of depressive episodes, and may also disrupt the circadian pattern that is an important component of the blue-light blocking approach.