Light from cellphones, laptops can reset internal clock

It is not uncommon for most of us to go to bed while watching a movie, surfing social media sites or just streaming YouTube on our cell phones. Looks like it is not good news for people who are a slave to this habit. Recent research has uncovered how light-sensitive cells in the eye can reset the internal clock and disturb our sleep patterns when exposed to light from the screen.

The findings of the study that have been published in the journal Cell Reportsmight help in improving the treatment of insomnia, jet lag, migraines, and circadian rhythm disorders.

Circadian rhythm

In case you are wondering what circadian rhythm is, our body has an internal clock that is typically synced with a 24-hour day-and-night pattern, also known as sleep-wake cycle. It helps in guiding our sleep-wake timings, eating habits and regular day-to-day activities by obeying signals from an area of the brain that monitors ambient light.

“Because we use artificial sources of light, our sleep-wake cycles are no longer tied to patterns of day and night”, the study states. “This lifestyle,” says senior study author Prof Satchidananda Panda, “causes disruptions to our circadian rhythms and has deleterious consequences on health”, according to a report in Medical News.

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