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Insomnia can have many causes, such as stress, a specific sleep disorder or an underlying health condition, and can be difficult to manage. This is even more the case if insomnia continues over the long term. Most people will experience insomnia at some stage during their life time. However, if any of the following symptoms continue after a few days, it’s advisable not to ignore the condition, but to consult a doctor. Insomnia is a serious condition and can affect your physical and mental health.
Sleep is a naturally recurring state of our mind and body. The main characteristics of sleep are reduced consciousness, inhibited sensory activity, decreased ability to react to stimulus, and inhibition of almost all voluntary muscles (skeletal muscles). Sleep occurs in repeating periods and in two distinct modes: Rapid eye movement sleep (REM sleep) and non-rapid eye movement sleep (non-REM Sleep).
While generally people are well aware of the dangers of UV light, such as sunburn and skin cancer, the general knowledge and awareness of blue light is very small. The exception to this seems to be Japan, where the blue light awareness appears to be quite high. A few days ago, while doing some research, I came across some interesting facts related to blue light in Japan.
Sleeping pills are medicines that are designed to help people fall asleep or stay asleep. Most sleeping pills are classified as sedative hypnotics and are prescription drugs (this may be regulated and handled differently depending on the country you are in). This specific class of drugs includes benzodiazepines, barbiturates, other hypnotics, and over-the-counter sleeping aids.
Do you know the effects of sleep deprivation on our brain and body? And that there’s a link between lack of sleep and Alzheimer’s disease? Too little sleep also affects the reproductive system, our ageing process and our immune system.
When we find ourselves in a situation where we need to get back on track with our sleeping routine, ‘boring” is king! A regular schedule day in and day out is one of the best recipes to get good and healthy sleep. Lighting plays a very important role with the way our body clock functions.
The circadian rhythm is our 24-hour cycle that controls our body temperature, hunger and sleep. Light has a big influence on it. In the morning, when light floods our brain, it tells our brain to stop making melatonin, the sleeping hormone, and later in the day flips the melatonin production back on for us to sleep.
Blue light is part of to the visible light spectrum and has a short wavelength and high energy. The main source of blue light is the sun, but there are also many other non-natural sources of blue light, such as computer screens, screens of smartphones and tablets, street lights, billboards, modern room lighting, and many more. Nightly artificial blue light exposure interferes with our circadian rhythm by suppressing the natural melatonin production, which can make it difficult to fall asleep.