As I write this short blog I and many other of my fellow global citizens are in lockdown, 2 billion people as of March 2020! That’s a staggering number and one that will most likely increase with time. Life has been turned upside down and old social norms are now considered taboo. Social distancing first and now self-isolation has changed the face of day to day life.
Even though the SARS-Covid-2 pandemic is the virus threatening to destroy our health its paramount that we don’t let other areas of our health suffer during these new living conditions, including blue light management.
Sleep is the antidote to the Coronavirus pandemic
Poor sleep damages your immune system. Academic literature has shown that if we do not get enough good quality sleep we are more likely to get sick following exposure to a virus. Sleep quality also determines how fast we recover from a virus when we get sick.
When we get into deep sleep our immune systems release cytokines which are proteins that help promote sleep. Some of these cytokines have to increase when we get an infection or inflammation. Having bad quality sleep has been shown to reduce the amount of these protective proteins our body releases which lowers our immune system which makes us more susceptible or take longer to recover from viral infections such as the novel Coronavirus.
Quality over Quantity
The question often asked is how much sleep do I need to bolster my immune system? I believe this is the wrong question and people should be focussing on sleep quality over the amount of sleep they get. The reason I believe this is adults who sleep over 9 hours per night have difficulties staying asleep, falling asleep and feeling tired the next day. This is evidence that these people are not getting good quality sleep.
Blue light exposure after dark is what disrupts our sleep. Harvard Health and multiple studies have clearly shown that exposure to blue light and some green light after dark shuts down melatonin products and impacts sleep quality.
The antidote is blue light glasses
By wearing blue light blocking glasses that focus on blocking 100% of light that falls in the 400-550nm range will increase melatonin production and improve sleep quality. Better sleep quality then means a stronger immune system to fight off viruses such as SARS-Covid 2 which is currently plaguing our society. Opt for blue light glasses that target the exact frequencies of light proven in academic studies to suppress melatonin and don’t go for cheap ones made in China.
BLUblox Sleep+ glasses are made in Australia in optics labs so these should be the go to for everyone
Some other tips to sleep better include:
- Having a cool bedroom. A cool bedroom helps sleep latency, which is the speed at which we fall asleep. A cool bedroom also helps us complete proper restorative sleep cycles
- Have lavender diffusing in your bedroom before sleep. Lavender increases GABBA which helps us get into deep sleep
- Calm your brain before bed with parasympathetic activities such as reading, listening to relaxing music, binaural beats or meditation. This will prepare the body to enter deep and REM sleep easier.
- Install red light bulbs in your house for use after dark. This will stop blue light disrupting your sleep through contact with your skin. BLUblox will be releasing flicker free LED red and yellow light bulbs by May 2020
Daytime Blue light exposure during quarantine
Now we are having to self-isolate and quarantine ourselves we are going to be exposing ourselves to even more damaging blue light than usual. We will default to watching more TV, using our smart phones more and even having our house lights on. This excessive blue light exposure will be damaging our eye health and disrupting our circadian rhythms later in the day.
When working from home during self-isolation or quarantine its essential to wear the best blue light glasses or best computer glasses to manage your light environment. There is no excuse to let your light management slip during these changing times and a pandemic should not be any reason to neglect our health.
The best blue light glasses are ones that filter about 30% of blue light across the 400-495nm range or block blue between 400-450nm if you have a sensitivity to light.
Blue light is essential during the day but too much blue light will damage your eyes, mitochondria and hormone health.
Regular outside breaks are paramount and if you cannot get or go outside due to the pandemic then open a window and let us much natural light in as possible.
Stay safe beautiful people and do not let you light hygiene slip during the Coronavirus Pandemic.