So imagine this…
You have been working on a computer all day and you feel yourself getting pretty tired. You see the clock and it’s close to midnight. You hop into bed immediately, but all of a sudden, you don’t fall asleep. You feel tired, but somehow still awake. You end up turning over and getting your phone to pass the time until you feel ready to fall asleep, but you don’t. You just feel more tired, but unable to fall asleep. What gives??? Why can’t you sleep?
Why can’t you sleep?
Easy! You consumed too much blue light and your mind and body did not have enough time to produce their natural melatonin and adenosine to help you fall asleep. This routine causes blue light toxicity. Now, you may ask ‘Where does blue light come from and how do I stop it?’.
Where does blue light come from and how do I stop it?
Good question! There is a super strong chance that you are reading this article from a computer or phone screen. All screens produce light to some extent. All light has some level of blue light, even natural light; like the sun. When the sun/light hits our eyes, our body and mind stops producing melatonin and adenosine; natural hormones that slows down our body and helps us fall asleep. When that happens, our brain notifies our body through the information we gain through our eyes. In this case, the blue light we absorb through our eyes is saying that we need to be up because there is daylight outside.
How do I reduce blue light and sleep better?
Our phones and computers are constantly giving us this blue light which is telling our minds that we need to be awake. We don’t give our bodies the chance to recover from the blue light and allow it to build healthy levels of melatonin and adenosine. My recommendation? Stop with all screen use, lower the lights, and allow yourself to do an activity that requires simple brain function like reading a book or doing a sudoku puzzle. Allow your body to build the natural hormones to allow yourself to sleep.
Written by Arbin Memisi, LPC