Q & A Library
Overcoming Insomnia With Blue Light?
I read an article about a blue light box that helps insomnia. You place the box on or next to your bed, watch the light and coordinate your breathing with it. Do you know about this? Can it really help?
Answer (Published 12/18/2008)
I discussed your question with Rubin Naiman, Ph.D., a psychologist and author who specializes in integrative sleep and dream medicine. He said that he's aware of products that purport to facilitate sleep by using blue lights, but that evidence shows that the blue end of the light spectrum inhibits the production of melatonin, a key neurotransmitter that regulates biorhythms and induces sleep. Dr. Naiman wrote to one of the manufacturers of the blue light boxes and asked for scientific evidence of its efficacy but never received an answer.
If you're struggling with insomnia, you've got a lot of company: about one third of all adults worldwide. While there's no “magic bullet” for this problem, most people can find relief from insomnia with the following natural remedies:
Andrew Weil, M.D.
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