How does ambient light affect sleep? - Sleep Monkey
When it comes to improving your sleep, one of the most significant factors that affect the quality and duration of your sleep is ambient light in the room. Next time you close your bedroom lights, try to notice how much light is still invading your space. Do you have moonlight creeping through the blinds? Light coming from power bars, electrical appliances, or any other light sources? You will notice that most bedrooms are not pitch black, and the tiniest amount of light can disturb our sleep cycles. Try to remember a time when you slept in an environment where it was pitched entirely black; perhaps you couldn't even see your hand in front of your face. That time was probably one of the best nights of sleep of your life. Ambient light disrupts your sleep quality and can affect your health long-term without any doubt, as numerous studies have proven.
Our bodies have evolved to sleep in darkness at night. The basic system that we operate on is dictated by sunlight. When it gets dark, it is time to sleep. That's the basis of our internal body clock called the circadian rhythm.
Today's culture challenges our body's natural rhythm because we are constantly surrounded by artificial light, even in the evening. With so many screens, tablets, telephones, and other digital devices, we are always under attack by blue light. Don't get me wrong blue light is essential to regulate circadian rhythm, but only when you get ample of it during the day, and it drops down at night. Blue light inhibits sleep-promoting neurons and activates arousal neurons. Blue light also suppresses melatonin which is the hormone that induces sleep and helps you drift away. Melatonin is also an essential antioxidant and reduces estrogens. Too much estrogen is linked with an increased chance of breast cancer. Blind women, for that specific reason, have 50% less incidence of breast cancer because they live their entire life in total darkness and have a high concentration of melatonin at all times.
The most dangerous light can be the one that's sneaking through your window or hallway, and sleep disturbance increases cortisol which is the stress hormone, and too much of it is detrimental to your health. So I think that by now you get the idea, too much light isn't good, and a total blackout room is ideal.
So what can you do to increase the darkness of your room at night?
You could install blackout curtains by they tend to run on the high side of costs. The good thing about them is that they offer a soundproof option and can help save energy costs since they can block incoming heat or cold from coming inside the home.
Another important thing is to put your phone away at night and away from your nightstand and head if possible. The frequency they emit and the potential light that can pop up from a notification or phone call can bring you to awakeness.
If you need to use electronic devices at all costs, please invest in a pair of blue light blocking glasses or use specific software that aims to reduce the amount of blue light a device emits.
Knowing that you will probably need to go to the washroom at night, invest in one or two nightlights that you can place in the hallway or the bathroom so that you do not need to light up any big lights to make your way there.
The one solution we are experts at!
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If you want to drastically improve your sleep and have a portable and excellent blackout option at the tip of your hand, please look at our product catalog and choose the sleeping mask that suits your needs best. Here is the link to our catalog https://sleepmonkey.ca/collections/all.