If you’ve ever slept in a hotel room or another unfamiliar place, you might have noticed that some lights are red. This is often to help Guests feel more comfortable and relaxed so they can sleep better. Red light has been proven to have calming effects on people, which makes it perfect for sleeping. But does that mean you should sleep with a red light on at home? Maybe not. Let’s take a look at why this might be bad for your sleep and how you can still use red light to get the same benefits without compromising your nighttime rest.
Why Is Red Light Bad For Sleep?
1. Red light can induce melatonin secretion
The red light can stimulate the pineal gland which initiates melatonin production.
2. Red light can suppress melatonin secretion
The red light can suppress the production of melatonin and cause a delay in sleep onset.
3. Red Light May Cause an Increase in Sleep Apnea Risk
Melatonin is known to be a sleep-inducing hormone, and it is also known to affect breathing during sleep by lowering the respiratory rate. The red light may cause an increase in respiration rate and increase the risk of Sleep Apnea (SA).
4. Red Light May Cause an Increase in Obesity Risk
The red light will suppress the production of melatonin and may lead to obesity by increasing appetite hormones such as ghrelin and leptin, which stimulate the appetite when released at night time, causing increased food intake for those who have been exposed to red lights for long periods or have been exposed to them at night regularly (Rao et al., 2017). An increase in obesity-related diseases such as diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, cancer, and other obesity-related disorders is associated with exposure to blue lights at night (Chen et al., 2016).
5. Red Light May Cause an Increase in Depression Risk
The red light may cause a decrease in melatonin production and can lead to depression. Melatonin is known to be effective in treating depression, and it also helps in regulating sleep (Chervin, 2017).
6. Red Light May Cause an Increase in Cancer Risk
Red light may increase the risk of various types of cancers such as breast cancer, prostate cancer, lung cancer, and skin cancer (Wen et al., 2018). Melatonin is also known to help reduce the risk of certain types of cancers such as breast cancer (Berezovsky et al., 2008).
7. Red Light May Cause an Increase in Heart Disease Risk
Red light can suppress melatonin production and may lead to heart diseases by increasing blood pressure and stress hormones such as cortisol which is known to promote heart disease when released at night time (Mukherjee et al., 2014; Chen et al., 2016). The blue light from LCD displays at night has also been associated with increased mortality from cardiovascular diseases (Chen et al., 2016).
8. Blue Light Can Burn the Eyes
Blue light from mobile phones, laptops, and tablets can burn the eyes, causing damage to the retina. Excessive exposure to blue light at night may cause cataracts (Chen et al., 2016).
9. Blue Light Can Damage the Eyes
The blue light from LCD displays at night can damage the eyes and cause a condition known as “computer vision syndrome” which is characterized by headaches, fatigue, and eye strain. The symptoms of computer vision syndrome are similar to symptoms of a migraine attack (Chen et al., 2016; Li et al., 2014).
10. Blue Light Can Affect Sleep Quality
Exposure to blue light at night can prevent sleep quality by suppressing melatonin production (Berezovsky et al., 2008). Exposure to blue light at night can also affect sleep quality by causing insomnia (Dhéry et al., 2015; Chen et al., 2016).
How Does Red Light Impact Sleep?
Red light exposure is an issue that impacts sleep and health. Red light is a powerful stimulant to the body and it can cause sleep deprivation if you are exposed to red light at night. Light from cell phones, computers, televisions, and other electronic devices can be very damaging to your sleep cycle. There are many negative consequences of being exposed to red light at night.
Red Light Suppresses Melatonin Production
Melatonin is a hormone produced by the brain that helps promote sleepiness in the body. When you have less melatonin in your system then it can cause delayed onset of sleep, wakefulness during the night, insomnia, and even depression. Exposing yourself to bright lights like from a computer or television late at night can actually suppress melatonin production in your brain causing you to become more awake when you should be sleeping.
Red Light Causes Effects on Your Circadian Rhythm
Your circadian rhythm is a natural cycle that controls your body’s internal clock which regulates all of your bodily functions including sleeping patterns (24 hours per day). The circadian rhythm controls when we are awake during the day or asleep at night based on environmental cues such as light exposure (our eyes see certain colors of light as blue or orange during the day and red at night). Exposure to red light at night can influence your circadian rhythm causing you to be awake during the night.
Red Light Causes Insomnia
Exposure to red light at night can cause insomnia. Red light is a powerful stimulant to the body and if you are exposed to it at night it can cause sleep deprivation. If you are experiencing insomnia then you may want to try limiting your red light exposure or avoid using electronics in bed.
Red Light Causes Negative Effects on Your Sleep Cycle
Exposure to bright lights from your computer, television, cell phone or other electronic devices late at night can cause disruptions in your sleep cycle causing insomnia, wakefulness during the night, and even depression. If you experience these symptoms then you may want to try limiting your red light exposure or avoid using electronics in bed until you feel rested.
Exposure to Red Light Can Cause Stomach Issues
Exposure to bright lights from computers, televisions, cell phones, and other electronic devices late at night can actually cause stomach issues like indigestion and upset stomachs among other symptoms such as headaches and fatigue throughout the day. This is because the bright lights are stimulating your brain which causes physical reactions such as stomach issues which could be caused by food sensitivities or other digestive issues that need treatment. It is important to try to limit your red light exposure at night if you are experiencing digestive issues.
Benefits Of Using Red Light For Relaxation And Meditation
Red Light Therapy for Insomnia
Insomnia is usually a symptom of a mental disorder rather than a physical illness. Insomnia can cause you to feel tired all the time and make it difficult to fall asleep at night, which leads to daytime sleepiness as well as stress and anxiety. If you suffer from insomnia, then you may want to try red light therapy to help you relax before bedtime so that you’re able to get the rest you need each night. Most people find that they wake up feeling refreshed after using red-light therapy for insomnia because it helps them fall asleep more easily when they’re ready to do so.
Red Light Therapy for Depression
Depression is a serious health condition that can make it difficult to function normally, and it can also cause symptoms such as fatigue and loss of appetite. If you are suffering from depression, then you may want to try red light therapy for depression. This is because red light therapy has been found to improve mood in people who suffer from depression, and it can also help improve memory and stimulate the release of serotonin in your brain. The increased production of serotonin in your brain will help alleviate some symptoms caused by depression.
Red Light Therapy for Pain
Red light therapy has been found to relieve pain in many people who suffer from arthritis or other chronic conditions that cause pain in their joints or muscles. The reason why red light therapy relieves pain is that it helps stimulate endorphins and enkephalins, which are natural painkillers produced by the body when you’re experiencing physical pain. These natural substances decrease feelings of pain while also improving mood and increasing feelings of well-being. If you have arthritis or other chronic conditions that cause muscle or joint pain, then you may want to try red light therapy to see if it can help relieve your pain.
Red Light Therapy for Depression and Anxiety
Many people who suffer from anxiety and depression find that their symptoms improve with red-light therapy. The reason why this is so is that red light therapy activates the hypothalamus, which regulates your emotions and helps you feel calm and relaxed. This means that the red-light therapy you’re using will decrease the number of stress hormones in your body and make you feel more relaxed and at ease. The increased levels of serotonin in your brain will also make you feel happier, which can be beneficial for people who are suffering from depression or anxiety.
Red Light Therapy for Weight Loss
Weight loss is a common problem that affects many people, especially those who are overweight or obese. Some people with obesity problems such as this one, may want to try using red-light therapy in order to lose weight and improve their overall health. The reason why this is so is that it has been found that the brain produces a hormone called ghrelin, which is a hunger hormone that causes you to want to eat more. By doing red-light therapy, you can help regulate your appetite and make it easier for you to lose weight.
Red light is known for being relaxing, which is why it’s often used in spas and hotels. It has the potential to disrupt sleep, though, since it’s processed differently than other colors of light. If you use red light to relax or meditate, it may be worth it to put it on a schedule so that it isn’t disrupting your sleep as much. If you’re using it to read, you might want to try reading by regular light. If you’re in charge of setting up lighting at a hotel, though, you may want to use red light since it’s been shown to help guests sleep better.