Queen of Sleep

Living with narcolepsy: a personal journey

Is the New IPad bad for people with sleep disorders?

with one comment

Apple uses words such as experience, magical and revolutionary when describing the New Apple Ipad. On top of that it looks incredibly sensual and sexy. Engadget.com says “the screen is, as we mentioned, capacitive and multitouch, and handled input excellently — if you’re used to the iPhone, then you know how very good Apple’s input technology is. To call it best in class would not be an overstatement; we’ve never used a more responsive screen.” Ahhh, I want one.

The Ipad does movies, music, email, apps, web browsing and e-books. Using any type of computer before bed-time is obviously not recommended because the lights that most screens emit disturbs the internal body clock which regulates sleep and wakefulness. The difference between Ipad’s e-reader and let’s say Amazon’s kindle is just that. The Ipad emits disturbing light and Kindle doesn’t. LA Times writes that “sleep experts say using the Ipad before bed can affect sleeping habits unlike most other e-readers”.

The difference? Devices like the Kindle, the Nook (the top part of the screen that displays books) and popular e-readers from Sony use a technology called e-paper. It simulates the look of an actual printed page and does not emit light.

The iPad, however, contains a touchscreen liquid-crystal display that, like computer screens and television sets, emits light.

But staring at the screen before bed could leave you lying awake. That’s because direct exposure to such abnormal light sources inhibits the body’s secretion of melatonin, say several sleep experts. If you’ve watched any late-night TV, you’ve no doubt heard the term thrown around in commercials for sleeping pills. Melatonin signals are sent through the brain as a response to darkness, telling the body to prepare to shut down for the night. Light-emitting devices, including cellphones and yep, the iPad, tell the brain to stay alert. Because users hold those devices so close to their face, staring directly into the light, the effect is amplified compared with, say, a TV across the room or a bedside lamp, said Frisca Yan-Go, director of the UCLA Sleep Disorders Center in Santa Monica. “The take-home lesson is that insomnia and electronics gadgets emitting light should not [be] mixed before bedtime,” UCLA Neurology Clinic Director Alon Avidan, also an associate professor at the university, wrote in an e-mail. However, “Kindle is better for your sleep,” he wrote in another e-mail.

Reading a book always puts me to sleep so personally it is a good way to relax. On a second thought, on more than a few occasions I continue dreaming the story where I drifted off. Then on a few occasions I have dreamt 3-4 possible outcomes of the story which then confuses the hell out of me because I start to confuse the two (dreaming story and actual story), and can’t really find what page to go back to.

If you really must read before bed-time, I would recommend using a device that have incorporated the e-paper technology (Kindle) because it probably won’t mess as much with your sleep cycle as a screen that emits light(Ipad). I can imagine that I could be beneficial to use the new Ipad’s e-reader if you read during the day. The light must stimulate the brain and help keeping you awake, at least for a while…aaahh, I still want one!

Written by Queen of Sleep

May 5, 2010 at 5:25 pm

One Response

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  1. I quite like reading through a post that can make men and women think.
    Also, thank you for allowing me to comment!


    August 7, 2013 at 11:51 am

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