Modern technology could be affecting the way you sleep. If you’re having a hard time sleeping at night, despite having full, productive days, it might be time to change (or completely get rid of) your smartphone viewing habits.
Disrupting the Body’s Natural Rhythm
Studies show that blue light from mobile devices is disruptive to circadian rhythms. Even in a dark environment, such elements trick your brain into staying active. According to an article from The New York Times, scientists have only started to uncover the connection between strong lighting and sleep:
“Light hitting the retina suppresses the production of melatonin — and there lies the rub. In this modern world, our eyes are flooded with light well after dusk, contrary to our evolutionary programming. Scientists are just beginning to understand the potential health consequences. The disruption of circadian cycles may not just be shortchanging our sleep, they have found, but also contributing to a host of diseases.”
Without melatonin, your body will resist sleep. As a solution, you could take melatonin supplements. But getting the right dosage can sometimes be difficult to gauge, leaving you with a slight hangover in the morning. Also, melatonin supplementation is a nightly ritual, and timing has to be just right for it to work (usually an hour before sleeping, intake after a meal may delay the effects).
F.lux can help ease the transition from your computer to your bed (available on Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X, Linux, iPhone and iPad). The software adjusts the lighting on the screen to filter out the brightness settings. It does this by tinkering with the color temperature of your monitor. By reducing the temperature, the light coming from the screen appears softer and more pleasant. While working, you may want to manually turn off the program, especially when editing or retouching photos.
The developers of F.lux also created a pair of smart glasses with similar features called Re-Timer.
For Android users, Twiligikea.com5ht offers a portable solution for inducing optimal sleeping conditions. The platform acts as a layer of red lighting over the mobile screen, allowing you to browse your device safely. If done correctly, you should start feeling a bit sleepy after 10-15 minutes of continuous use.
There are several customization options available for daily automation. Setting your location lets the app adjust to your personal sunrise and sunset coordinates. During the daytime, the film is invisible, but at night the shade of red is very noticeable and bold. Toggling the feature manually can be done through the notification bar.
From the app panel, you will find options to set the color temperature, intensity and screen dim. Adjusting the elements accordingly is useful if you’re having a hard time seeing the display. To get the most out of the app, try checking out the experimental features that are being tested for future updates. Such settings like backlight control, smartlight and service filter times are located in the More Settings section, behind the easy-to-access profiles.