Doctors highlight health effects of LED lights - WFSB 3 Connecticut

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Doctors highlight health effects of LED lights

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Doctors are explaining the health effects LED lights have on us. (WFSB) Doctors are explaining the health effects LED lights have on us. (WFSB)
HARTFORD, CT (WFSB) -

The effects of LED lights on your health is a new hotbed issue.

Light is what gives us our cues for when it is time to go to sleep and when it’s time to wake up, but many experts believe it can have some adverse effects on your health, depending on the kind of light.

“The reds and yellow spectrums is much friendlier to sleep; has less disruption on the sleep hormone, which is melatonin--that's what tells us what time to sleep and makes us drowsy than the blue and the white,” said sleep expert Dr. Prashant Grover.

The new LED lights have more blue and white in them, which is why the lights seem brighter.

“These lights cause suppression of melatonin secretions which lead to more awakeness, problems with sleep,” Grover said.

The LED lights are starting to phase out the old sodium bulbs, due to their longevity and cost-effective traits.

In fact, there are some LED streetlights being tested out around the United States, which is also creating some concerns.

“These lights have more glare,” Grover said.

A glare which the American Medical Association believes could be blinding to drivers.

The American Medical Association said "It is estimated that white LED lamps have five times greater impact on circadian sleep rhythms than conventional street lamps."

The AMA recently released new “healthy public lighting” guidelines, citing that LED lights are also estimated to have "five times greater impact on circadian sleep rhythms than conventional street lamps.”

Grover said there’s an even bigger issue at hand.

“Right now the major health concern is, more than the streetlight, is what we have in our homes,” Grover said.

One of the leading causes of insomnia in 2016 is attributed to lifestyle.

“The light from your smartphones, tablets, and televisions does disrupt your sleep at night,” Grover said.

So, trade your remote and cell phone in for some dark curtains, and if that doesn’t work, try out the “20 minute rule.”

“If you've been in bed for about 20 minutes in your own mind, and you can't fall asleep…get out of bed, if possible go to another room...make sure the environment is nice and quiet...read...do something boring,” Grover said.

For more information on the AMA guidelines, click here.

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