Not sleeping? You might need to turn off blue light on your phone. This week, I was interviewing John Medina, author of Brain Rules, for a future episode of Every Classroom Matters. He made the offhand comment, “blue light wreaks havoc with your brain.” We've known this since 2006, This Psychology Today article can help explain why your teenager may be awake ALL NIGHT.
Thank goodness we can turn off blue light on Apple devices now. I recorded a quick video and am telling everyone I know to make sure they set their iPhones and iPads up this way — especially for kids. I turn off blue light in the evening until the morning so that if I have to look at my phone, it won't wake me up so much.
Note that after you follow these instructions, your iPhone or iPad will have a brownish twinge to it because the blue light is turned off. You want that. It took me two days to get used to but it isn't that big of a problem for me.
Tell all the parents you know. ;-) (They'll thank you.)
Here's a quick tutorial I just uploaded to YouTube.
How to Turn Blue Light Off on your iPhone or iPad by using Night Shift
Why Does Blue Light Wake You Up?
This would be a fantastic science project for kids. Here are some resources about this phenomenon:
- National Geographic, “How Light Wakes Up the Brain“
- Scientific American, “Q&A: Why Is Blue Light before Bedtime Bad for Sleep“
- How artificial light is wrecking your sleep and what to do about it (Note: use the tip above, you don't have to use blue light goggles anymore to look at your iPhone and iPad!)
- What's in a color? The Unique Human Health Effects of Blue Light
- Bipolar Disorder, Light, and Darkness – this article is a bit concerning as it relates to mental health.
Never miss an episode
Get the 10-minute Teacher Show delivered to your inbox.