Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Glasses that Block Blue-Light Could Improve ADHD Symptoms and Sleep Disorders - Associated Content

Glasses that Block Blue-Light Could Improve ADHD Symptoms and Sleep Disorders - Associated Content

Scientists at the Lighting Innovations Institute of Ohio's John Carroll University, under the lead of Dr. Richard Hansler, have discovered that the elimination of blue light for a couple of hours a day improve the symptoms of Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). Furthermore, people suffering from sleep disorders like insomnia also seem to improve their overall quality of sleep, if the blue-light is eliminated for a couple of hours each day.

The researchers' innovation is simple and cheap but could mean the improvement of the quality of life for many. The scientists developed special glasses that block the blue light, if worn. Blocking the blue light rays results in changes of the circadian rhythm of the patient. The circadian rhythm is the process of normal and regular changes of a person's mental and physical characteristics throughout each day. Circadian is Latin for 'around a day'. In a normal daily rhythm, melatonin, the sleep hormone, is not released until a person is in darkness, when blue-light rays are not present. Thus, wearing blue-light blocking glasses cause the release of the melatonin to happen earlier in the day.

Through their research the scientists determined that the early melatonin release caused a significant reduction in ADHD symptoms. Previously, studies by scientists at the University of Toronto have also shown that advancing the circadian rhythm improve symptoms of ADHD. In the Toronto study, twenty-nine adults diagnosed with ADHD were enrolled in a three-week trial.

The Ohio researchers also determined that their method could greatly improve sleep quality. Furthermore, the scientists believe the blue-light blocking glasses can also aid in the prevention of postpartum depression and Seasonal Affective Disorders, as well as the reduction of the risk of cancer. They recommend for patients to wear the glasses a couple of hours before bedtime.

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