E-reader Before Bed Makes for a Morning Sleepyhead

By AFM Team – February 1, 2015

It can be hard to let go of the world when your head hits the pillow at night. Even more so if you take one more scroll through your social media feeds or read “just one more chapter” on your e-reader before setting your alarm. A new study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences compared the circadian (or sleep) effects of reading an E-book versus a printed book before bed. Researchers at Brigham and Women’s Hospital found that using a light-emitting device before bed can have an adverse effect on the secretion of melatonin, a hormone that normally rises in the evening and plays a role in inducing sleepiness. Although iPads were used in the study, BWH researchers also measured other E-readers, laptops, cell phones, LED monitors, and electronic devices, all of which emitted blue light. “We found the body's natural circadian rhythms were interrupted by the short-wavelength enriched light from these electronic devices,” said Anne-Marie Chang, an author of the study. “Participants took longer to fall asleep, spent less time in REM sleep, and had reduced next-morning alertness than when reading a printed book [before bed].” http://bit.ly/1A5LIwD



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