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How does artificial light affect your sleep rhythm?

Wat doet kunstlicht met je slaapritme?

How does artificial light affect your sleep rhythm?

One of the problems that plagues modern man is sleep problems. Every third person has insomnia. These data are worrying, given that sleep is important for our functioning. People with insomnia often suffer from concentration problems and are more susceptible to illness.

Many psychological, biochemical and behavioral processes in our body depend on our sleep cycle. It is also important to find a healthy balance between daylight and darkness to regulate your biological clock. Fewer and fewer people know the importance of sleep, and this leads to unpleasant physical disorders.

Different types of light have different effects

Today it is difficult to imagine living without light. Not only because we cannot perform many basic activities without light, but also because it is important for the functioning of the body. We must add a comment here. It is true that we need light, but it is also important when we need it. We receive light only through cells in the retina. From the retina, the stimuli are translated to the nervous system, which responds to what type of light it receives.

The distinction is based on the wavelength of light. Sunlight or natural light has a blue, powerful, short wavelength, which is especially important in the morning. It tells our body that it is time to wake up and fills you with enthusiasm and motivation. In the evening, this type of light has adverse effects. This is also the light we receive through tablets and mobile phones. This doesn't bother you during the day, but in the evening it confuses your biological rhythm. Yellow-red light, such as from a candle or flame, has very little influence.

Sleep, then and now.

The advent of electricity towards the end of the 19th century is more or less responsible for the sleep problems that one in three people have today. Before electricity, there was a dark 12-hour night and a light day. Of those 12 hours, people slept for 9 and the other three were lit with candles. Electricity makes it much brighter at night, due to artificial lighting and electronic devices. And that is how the lack of darkness is at the root of this problem.

Today, people spend 90% of their time indoors. That gives us too little exposure to natural light and too much to artificial light. We often have a television, computer or mobile phone in front of us, even when we are not using it. The eyes signal to the brain that it is not night, and this disrupts the natural psychological process from day to night. This makes it harder for you to fall asleep, and therefore you sleep worse.

Artificial light disrupts the internal biological clock

The daily rhythm is a biological rhythm that is standard in almost all living things. A normal daily rhythm between dark and light is essential for the internal biological clock, which helps our body function. Sleep rhythm disorders and simply staying awake affect many processes in the body, such as metabolism, the immune system, cell repair and hormone production. At night the body calms down, your internal temperature and metabolism decrease and your melatonin production increases. Artificial light around sleep time can prevent all these processes. Turning on a light lowers melatonin levels, which makes you hungry.

What can we do to wake up satisfied and rested in the morning?

We recommend avoiding devices that emit blue light within a few hours of going to sleep. Put away your tablet and mobile phone at least three hours before resting. Make sure your bedroom is quiet, cover light sources such as cell phones or televisions, or better yet, avoid having these devices in your bedroom at all. If you need light sources in the evening, use yellow or red light and use natural light as much as possible. During the day it is also nice that you enjoy enough natural light to help you sleep better in the evening. Healthy sleep is healthy living.

Do not use your TV in your bedroom, but only place it in the living room on a nice TV cabinet . You will not only create peace in the bedroom, but also the perfect look in your living room.


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