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Saturday, April 22, 2017

New cells found in the retina, paving way for jet lag therapy

The cells of interest in this article express melanopsin receptors. Melanospin receptors detect blue wavelength light (same as the blue sky) and communicate directly to the SCN where it promotes increase in neurohormones such as dopamine, histamine, serotonin and vasopressin which all serve to promote wakefulness and to suppress sleep. Devices having LCD/LED screens (smartphones, tablets, monitors/TVs) emit an intense amount of blue wavelength light. The effect of such blue light exposure lasts 1-3 hours and subsequently the resultant sleep may be unrefreshing. So, in order to prevent sleep disruption, avoid such devices one hour prior to bedtime and dim/turn off other ambient light.
from Rajesh Harrykissoon, MD