It might seem like a stretch, but the amount of light you surround yourself with can actually have a pretty substantial impact on your overall mental state and even your physical health. You might be asking yourself at this point how something as simple and all surrounding as light can really impact anything physical or deeply rooted in your mind, but the answer is not entirely simple. There are many ways that light touches us, and many ways that it can mess with us. With side effects that are both positive and negative, read on to learn more about the big impact of light.
The Internal Clock
There are so many things that can mess up our internal clock, including the wrong intensity of light at the wrong times. Different colors, intensities, and brightness levels of light give our body hints and cues that it uses to wake up, fall asleep, and everything in the middle. Without the right amount of light at the right times during the day, the body can be more tired than usual, or it can get sleepy when you should be working. Light at night can create problems with sleep, which can lead to a problematic next day. Ever wonder why the lights at work are often bright and, at times, blinding? Science has shown us that bright lights result in higher levels of productivity than dimmer lights.
So what’s the bottom line? The human body sees light as something that tells us what comes next. For those looking to be alert and productive, bright light is the way to go, while dimmer lights create an environment of relaxation and preparation for sleep.
What’s the Right Side of the Bed?
Ever hear the saying where someone says you got up on the wrong side of the bed if you’re in a sour mood? Well, light has a very important role in making sure that the side of the bed you wake up on is always the right side. Waking up is far easier, and your mood is far more positive, if you wake up to a brightly lit room. It may be uncomfortable at first, and some people ease into it, but bright lights will help you get awake and alert quickly. Leaving the groggy nature of sleep behind allows your mood to flex towards the positive as well, putting you on the right path for a great day from the get go.
If you’re one of those who wake up and get ready for work in the dark, you’re likely starting your day off on the ‘wrong side’ as it will take you longer to wake up, you’ll feel fatigued more than you should, and your mood will quickly follow suit.
Not many people realize that the amount of light, specifically sunlight, that a person gets can impact hormone levels and vitamin levels in the blood. Without enough light, the body cannot synthesize enough vitamin D, creating a deficiency. Getting too much light at the wrong times can mess with the levels of melatonin in the body, which can dramatically impact sleep cycles. When melatonin production is changed so that we get too much when we don’t need it, or too little when we do, we can suffer from forgetfulness, sleeplessness, and physical maladies like irregular blood pressure, glucose levels, and the general repercussions of not getting enough rest. All of this can lead to some pretty real and pretty serious medical conditions like diabetes.
Today, there are many ways to make sure you get the right amount of light in your life. From home decor options like our very own BrightTouch lights, to spending more time in the sun, take an extra moment to ensure you are giving your body enough of the light it craves at the right times. You’ll be much brighter yourself, and chances are, healthier too.