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Circadian Rhythm Problems

Discussion in 'Sleep' started by Ocean, Apr 25, 2013.

  1. Calathea

    Calathea Darkness therapy

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    Apart from, you know, those of us who found it did work. Darkness therapy is a key part of it for me. What's the point in taking melatonin if you are then going to destroy its effects by exposing yourself to blue light in the evening? Bright light therapy took me from N24 (a 25 hour day) to DSPS, and then darkness therapy treated the DSPS. Taking melatonin tablets did absolutely nothing for me, presumably because I was sitting in front of a computer in the evening which was suppressing my melatonin levels. Wearing orange glasses which block blue light, on the other hand, works as well as a strong sleeping tablet. I'd far rather try something which normalises natural melatonin production than take artificial melatonin and have to keep compensating for the way light affects the circadian clock. And if you read the reviews of orange glasses on Amazon, you'll find a huge number of people who also find that darkness therapy works, not to mention the research that's out there.
  2. Hip

    Hip Senior Member

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    From your earlier post, Calathea (quoted below), you seem to be saying that darkness therapy is what worked for you, not so much light therapy.

    I find darkness therapy interesting, even though my first experiments with it were not successful. But after reading this thread, I think I am going to try darkness therapy again. In my first experiments, I just used some software which filtered out the blue light from my computer monitor; but I did not use the glasses that cut out blue light. Perhaps I need to try these glasses.
  3. Hip

    Hip Senior Member

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    ➤ Lowbluelights blue blocker sunglasses at $68 seem a little expensive, but there do appear to be cheaper options.

    ➤ BlueBlocker make blue blocker sunglasses starting from $30.

    NoIR (who make specialist medical sunglasses) seem to have a quite a few few blue blocker sunglasses and clip-ons in their range, and for the reasonable price of around $30. Incidentally, NoIR are the sunglasses recommended for people doing the Marshall Protocol, who develop light sensitivity.

    The specific NoIR lens filter colors that offer blue blocker protection inlcude the following:

    Filter #465 -- 70% Yellow
    Filter #50 -- 54% Yellow
    Filter #505 -- 56% Orange
    Filter #60 -- 49% Orange
    Filter #68 -- 52% Light Orange
    Filter #553 -- 52% Red/Orange
    Filter #75 -- 47% Red/Orange

    Out of the above, the NoIR Yellow Filter #465 seems excellent: 70% light transmission, yet with blue blocker protection. Although both the Lowbluelights and the BlueBlocker brand of sunglasses use amber/orange lenses, so perhaps orange might be the optimum color for blocking blue light? It's possible that amber/orange blocks some of the green spectrum as well as the blue, and green light can also activate the photosensitive ganglion cells in the eye that suppress melatonin. In which case, the NoIR Orange Filter #505 might be a better choice.

    • NoIR is for sale at techopticsinternational.com, who do the NoIR Yellow Filter #465 with 70% light transmission.

    • NoIR is for sale at magnifyingaids.com:

    NoIR N60 UV Shield Glasses - Orange Light transmission: 49%
    NoIR U60 UV Shield Glasses - Orange Light transmission: 49%
    NoIR U50 UV Shield Glasses - Yellow Light transmission: 54%

    In all these sunglasses, presumably the highest light transmission percentage is desirable, as for evening use, you don't want to block out all the light, just the blue light.

    • NoIR is for sale at lssproducts.com:

    Where at says BBP in their list of NoIR sunglasses, this indicates blue blocker protection.

    NoIR Fit Over Yellow - Large Light transmission: 54%
    NoIR Fit Over Yellow Light transmission: 54%
    NoIR Fit-Over SpectraShield Orange, Large Light transmission: 49%

    lssproducts.com have some NoIR clip-ons with blue blocker protection:
    NoIR Clip-0n Style - Flip Up Yellow Light transmission: 54%
    NoIR Clip-0n Style - Flip Up Orange Light transmission: 49%

    • NoIR is for sale at restoredliving.com.

    • NoIR in the UK can be bought here optimalowvision.co.uk for around £22:

    Yellow Spectrashield Plus Light transmission: 70%
    Orange Spectrashield Plus Light transmission: 56%
    Red/Orange Spectrashield Plus Light transmission: 52%

    • NoIR in the UK can also be bought at rnib.org.uk
    invisiblejungle likes this.
  4. SickOfSickness

    SickOfSickness Senior Member

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    There are some on eBay at $12.95 or less. I don't know if the light blocking is the same or not, compared to the $30 ones.

    The glasses helped me a little, but less than melatonin helps.

    Melatonin can usually give me 30 minutes where I am sleepier than usual, but that does not mean I can fall asleep. Insomnia can be powerful. Sometimes I want nothing more than to go to sleep and I feel physical or mentally exhausted (or both), but I still don't fall asleep.
  5. Hip

    Hip Senior Member

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    Ah yes, they are pretty cheap on eBay. Just search for blue blocking sunglasses.

    I just ordered some NoIR Orange Spectrashield Plus (Filter #505) clip on sunglasses. Note that in the UK, if you are using these glasses for a medical condition like ME/CFS, then you don't have to pay the VAT tax on the glasses.
  6. perchance dreamer

    perchance dreamer Senior Member

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    I agree that $68 is a lot of money for those glasses. As you look for an alternative, keep in mind that for amber glasses to work that they need to block light all around, including the sides.
  7. caledonia

    caledonia

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    Cincinnati, OH, USA
  8. Hip

    Hip Senior Member

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    Well, I hope that the NoIR clip on sunglasses that I ordered have some beneficial effect, because with clip on sunglasses, you cannot easily block the light from the sides. However, NoIR do have sunglasses in their range that wrap right around the eye area, covering the sides as well.
  9. SickOfSickness

    SickOfSickness Senior Member

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    I have only seen 1 style that covers the sides well, and they were big, to wear over eyeglasses. (I could not use that kind, they would fall off.) Some side coverage is better than none. Above there was a good idea to have a lamp with amber bulb for night time. There is also free software to make a computer monitor have less blue light.
  10. Hip

    Hip Senior Member

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    HERE are some blue blocking sunglasses for just $7 on Amazon, along with some testimonials.
  11. Calathea

    Calathea Darkness therapy

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    No, that's not the case. Light therapy stopped the Non-24 Sleep-Wake Cycle, and darkness therapy then stopped the Delayed Sleep Phase Syndrome a few years later. The difference between having N24 and DSPS was massive. Falling asleep an hour later every day was a total nightmare. Darkness therapy is more effective for me than light therapy, so if I'm generally doing well I just need the darkness therapy, but if I need an extra boost, I need both. I've gone years with using both. So it is not at all true to say I didn't receive any benefit from using light therapy.

    As for glasses, you don't need to buy those pricey NoIR ones. Infra-red is irrelevant. You just need blue-blockers. There are plenty of relatively cheap ones on Amazon, and if you look at my website, you'll see a link to Optima Low Vision, who sell a huge variety of tinted glasses and state which ones block blue light. Lowbluelights.com is vastly overpriced.
  12. Gypsy

    Gypsy Senior Member

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    Calathea , your website is very, very impressive. You have put together so much great information. It is very kind of you to share all of this information.

    Now, I have a quick question about lightbulbs. I will probably order a few from lowbluelights eventually but was looking for a cheaper option in the meantime. Your site mentions these "bug lights" as we call them in the US.

    I was wondering if anyone else has tried these? They are yellow, and some come in very low wattage so I assume would be dim. I see that you can buy a single cheap incandescent yellow bug lite for around $2 at home improvement like stores. The florescent ones a bit more. Possibly even a yellow low watt "party light" (decorative)

    Worth a try?

    ETA I found those cheap glasses on amazon, thanks everyone for the lead!
  13. Ocean

    Ocean Senior Member

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    Thanks Wayne. I've ordered blue light filtering glasses and will start there, then melatonin after that. (I like to only introduce one new thing at a time.) Very interesting about cortef. What dose do you take? Did you have your cortisol measured and it was low in the morning? Mine was tested I think at night and was normal. But maybe I should ask for a morning one too. So now do you wake up early just to take the cortef, or is 6:00 am the time you get out of bed now?
  14. Ocean

    Ocean Senior Member

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    Soxfan, do regular labs like Quest, etc. do the testing as well?
  15. Ocean

    Ocean Senior Member

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  16. soxfan

    soxfan Senior Member

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    I am not sure who else does the saliva melatonin testing. You could probably check online or call the lab directly. I wish I could help but my doctor ordered the labs for me and gave me the paperwork to send with the kit. He actually had to write it in because it wasn't something that he could check off like he did with the cortisol testing..
    Even though my level is low I only take a quarter of a pill an hour before bedtime.
    Ocean likes this.
  17. Ocean

    Ocean Senior Member

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    Soxfan, what dose is your pill?

    An update: I received the glasses today from Amazon but they aren't comfortable for me. May try getting a bluelight filter for my computer instead.
  18. soxfan

    soxfan Senior Member

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    I have 3mg meltaway pills that I can easily cut into quarters...they are made by Naturemade but I am sure there are other companies that make them...If you have a pill cutter you can easily cut any of the tablets. I just like the meltaway ones...
    Ocean likes this.
  19. Little Bluestem

    Little Bluestem Senescent on the Illinois prairie, USA

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    Solar Shield makes sunglasses that fit over regular glasses in several sizes. Mine do not fall off. I have regular ones to wear over my glasses and amber ones that I wear alone in the evening at the computer. I have bought them at K-Mart and Walgreens.

    ETA: Do you have a website handy for the software to make a computer monitor have less blue light?
  20. SickOfSickness

    SickOfSickness Senior Member

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    Yes, http://stereopsis.com/flux/
    Little Bluestem likes this.

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