Melatonin Hacking – Avoiding Blue Light Near Bedtime
There is some consensus in the world of sleep medicine that being exposed to multiple hours of artificial light before bed can reduce melatonin production. Reduced melatonin production means delayed onset for sleep, less REM and taking longer in the morning to wake up. F.lux and Apple’s Night Shift are two examples of software reducing the short wave blue light on iOS and OS/X screened devices, but the results have been mixed. Scientific American sums up our options nicely.
Do you have any suggestions as to what we can do to reduce our blue-light exposure before bed?
For those who just cannot turn off digital devices, here are a few suggestions: You can dim the brightness of your devices or you can make use of programs that filter out short-wavelength light in the evening. I’ve also heard of modern technologies that use different settings, such as reversing the print so the page is dark and the text is light, which, though untested, are probably beneficial if they reduce the amount of emitted light. But the best and least popular answer would be to simply avoid your devices before going to sleep!
We report here that the circadian resetting response in humans, as measured by the pineal melatonin rhythm, is also wavelength dependent. Exposure to 6.5 h of monochromatic light at 460 nm induces a two-fold greater circadian phase delay than 6.5 h of 555 nm monochromatic light of equal photon density. Similarly, 460 nm monochromatic light causes twice the amount of melatonin suppression compared to 555 nm monochromatic light, and is dependent on the duration of exposure in addition to wavelength.
Adafruit publishes a wide range of writing and video content, including interviews and reporting on the maker market and the wider technology world. Our standards page is intended as a guide to best practices that Adafruit uses, as well as an outline of the ethical standards Adafruit aspires to. While Adafruit is not an independent journalistic institution, Adafruit strives to be a fair, informative, and positive voice within the community – check it out here: adafruit.com/editorialstandards
Stop breadboarding and soldering – start making immediately! Adafruit’s Circuit Playground is jam-packed with LEDs, sensors, buttons, alligator clip pads and more. Build projects with Circuit Playground in a few minutes with the drag-and-drop MakeCode programming site, learn computer science using the CS Discoveries class on code.org, jump into CircuitPython to learn Python and hardware together, TinyGO, or even use the Arduino IDE. Circuit Playground Express is the newest and best Circuit Playground board, with support for CircuitPython, MakeCode, and Arduino. It has a powerful processor, 10 NeoPixels, mini speaker, InfraRed receive and transmit, two buttons, a switch, 14 alligator clip pads, and lots of sensors: capacitive touch, IR proximity, temperature, light, motion and sound. A whole wide world of electronics and coding is waiting for you, and it fits in the palm of your hand.
Have an amazing project to share? The Electronics Show and Tell is every Wednesday at 7pm ET! To join, head over to YouTube and check out the show’s live chat – we’ll post the link there.