Troy, NY – In the spring, later sunset and extended daylight exposure delay bedtimes in teenagers, according to researchers at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute's Lighting Research Center (LRC).
"Biologically, this increased exposure to early evening light in the spring delays the onset of nocturnal melatonin, a hormone that indicates to the body when it's nighttime," explains Mariana Figueiro, Ph.D., associate professor. "This extended exposure adds to the difficulties teens have falling asleep at a reasonable hour."
The sleep-deprived brats become moody. How about totally covering the windows in their bedrooms to block out all light in the evening?
Over time when coupled with having to rise early for school, this delay in sleep onset may lead to teen sleep deprivation and mood changes, and increase risk of obesity and perhaps under-performance in school, according to Figueiro.
Kids are made to go to school too early. This is dumb. Too early rising even boosts teen car accidents.
Getting up late means less morning sun which just makes the problem worse.
"This is a double-barreled problem for teenagers and their parents," says Figueiro. "In addition to the exposure to more evening daylight, many teens also contend with not getting enough morning light to stimulate the body's biological system, also delaying teens' bedtimes."
Blue light at the right time in the morning (while in school) could shift teen clocks so they'd go to sleep earlier. Blocking blue light exposure delays onset of sleep. Got problems falling asleep? Adjust your light exposure. Be aware that evening exposure to computer screens might cause delay in sleep too.
We do not live in our natural environment. We need to engineer the environments that we do live in to match the designs of our bodies. We should engineer the intensity and frequency distribution of light across our days to control our biological clocks so that we get enough sleep and get up when we need to.
|Share |||Randall Parker, 2010 July 26 11:00 PM Brain Sleep|