Getting to sleep should be the easiest thing in the world. You’ve had a long day, you’re tired and all your body wants to do is rest. It’s a natural cycle, but since technology entered the picture, it’s become harder and harder for any of us to do. Instead of letting technology keep you up, here’s how to use it to help you sleep better.
How Technology Got Us Here
As the sun sets and night begins, that tells the brain that it is time to wind down and get ready for bed. But since the wonderful invention of electricity and the light bulb, as the sun goes down the lights come on to keep us productive and awake.
Add to that the computer, TV screens, and cell phones that we now can’t live without. They not only make it artificially light, but they emit a blue wavelength that can decrease the natural production of our “sleepy time” hormone: melatonin. Oh no!
Why This is a Problem
When our brain does not get the hormonal message that it is bedtime, it is far too easy to begin to stay up later then we should. People who get less than 7 1/2 hours of sleep a night fall prey to the myth that they don’t need the “extra” sleep. Over time, the brain will slowly become sleep deprived.
Sleep deprivation has been shown to weaken the immune system, increase inflammation, increase weight, and can trigger depression AND pain. Is it the pain which prevents you from getting a full and restful sleep, or the lack of restful sleep which causes the pain? It can be very confusing for both the person experiencing it and the practitioner trying to unravel it.
Weight gain, weaker immunity, inflammation and pain? There is a reason why sleep deprivation is considered a form of torture! Yet many people willingly choose to do this to themselves with bad nighttime habits.
How Technology Can Help You Sleep Better
One of the best things you can do with technology is to reduce the amount of blue light emitted in your home, especially at night.
A very inexpensive correction can be had from purchasing a pair of “blue blocker” glasses that you wear during your evening around 8:00 pm. The orange colored lenses will block out the blue light that we are exposed to when we are watching TV and looking at social media.
There are also computer glasses to reduce eyestrain and even reading glasses that will block blue light. By blocking the blue light, your brain will get the signal that it is time to start melatonin production so you can fall asleep and stay asleep.
There is also software that can be downloaded to your computer that will adjust the color of your screen brightness based on the time of day called Flux. It matches the brightness of your screen to the time of day. Click on justgetflux.com to get their free download for Windows users!
Install dimmer light switches in your living room and start turning down the light in the evening to help your brain recognize that evening is coming. Blazing lamps are good for cleaning, but not for relaxing at night.
You may also consider purchasing amber bulbs for those lights that may need to be turned on in the middle of the night, for example, when waking to breastfeed or to use the restroom. Consider an always-on night light in the bathroom, they’re not just good for little kids!
If You Still Have Trouble Sleeping
If you’ve tried all of these options for some time and you are still experiencing pain, have trouble shutting off your brain at night, or have been struggling with your weight, there might be more going on than technology.
If you want to really see what is happening to your brain, doing a “brain map” (QEEG) will let us know if your brain is “running too fast” which can contribute to the sleep issue. As the “Holistic Detective” I have many different tools to help you feel better, reduce toxicity, and sleep better.
Take that next step and schedule an appointment with my office at (559) 447-1404 sooner than later. The longer you wait, the more sleep you’re going to lose.
Medical Disclaimer: The information provided in this email is for informational purposes only and has been compiled from years of practice, study and experience by Mikell Suzanne Parsons, DC. This information is NOT intended to be used as a substitute for the advice from your physician or any other health care provider, or any information contained in or on any product label or packaging. Do not use information in this email for diagnosing or treating any health problem or disease. Always speak to your health care provider before taking any nutritional, herbal, or homeopathic supplement. If you have or suspect that you have a health problem, contact your health care provider immediately. Do not ignore seeking health care advice or delay seeking care because of something that you have read in this email. Information provided in this email DOES NOT create a doctor-patient relationship between you and Mikell Suzanne Parsons, DC. Information and statements regarding dietary supplements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration and are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.
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