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How Smartphone Blue Light Disrupts Sleep Patterns; Causes Sleep-Disrupted Disorders Including Cancer?

Update Date: Nov 28, 2016 10:00 AM EST
IFA 2015 Consumer Electronics And Appliances Trade Fair
Visitors try out the Honor 7 smartphone at the Huawei stand at the 2015 IFA consumer electronics and appliances trade fair on September 4, 2015 in Berlin, Germany. The 2015 IFA will be open to the public from September 4-9. (Image used for representation only.) (Photo : Sean Gallup/Getty Images)

The smartphone's blue light can disrupt sleep patterns as it negatively affects the brain and the body. Meanwhile, sleep disruption opens up a host of health problems that could even be linked to cancer.

The smartphone's blue light offers a bright glare that can even be seen in bright sunny days. In fact, the blue light at night can trick our brains into thinking that it is still daylight.

The glare from the smartphone stops our brain from producing melatonin, which is responsible for disrupting our body to rest. Without this hormone, getting a good night's sleep becomes harder. It is already a known fact that not getting enough sleep eventually brings a host of health problems.

Using the smartphone in checking emails or accessing social media accounts while in bed may become a national health issue as evidence suggests that the smartphone's blue light has an adverse effect on a person's brain.

How does the smartphone's blue light affect our brain?

Sleep disruption impairs memory and also reduces cognitive performance, making it harder to learn new things. Long-term sleep disruption also contributes to the build-up of neurotoxins, making it harder and harder to sleep. The vicious cycle of sleep disruption prevails and even becomes a chronic problem in the long run.

Moreover, sleep disruption causes the hormones to go haywire especially the one that controls hunger. When this happens, a person who has trouble sleeping tends to feel hunger pains and eat when there is no need to. Sleep disruption can cause obesity as reported in the Business Insider.

Inadequate sleep is also believed to increase the risk of cancer in the breast and prostate. Moreover, prolonged exposure to the smartphone's blue light can damage the retina and even increase the risk of developing cataracts. Although more research is needed to establish eye damage over time, it is an established fact that people complain of eye discomfort when looking into the bright screen of their phones at night.

Will smartphones app help in lessening sleep disruption?

Smartphone app designers know that the glaring blue light when used at night, can be harsh to the eyes. This is why programs like f-lux and the night shift mode in Apple devices have light adjustment features to reduce the glare at specific times as reported in iflScience.

However, there is no strong evidence to support that these apps no longer disrupt sleep. Users do attest that the orange tint is less glaring, but doctors still recommend that smartphones be kept out of bed in order to avoid sleep disruption caused by the smartphone's blue light.

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