When you have a baby, you are constantly going into the nursery for feedings and to check on them, even at night. Turning on the bright overhead light can be a hassle, so many people use night lights. But what color night light is the best? We have thoroughly researched this question and other ones that might come up while considering this topic.
Sleep therapists recommend red night lights because it promotes restful sleep. This is because red light doesn't emit any blue wavelengths, which can suppress melatonin production. Amber lights are also good nursery lights that won't interfere with an infant's sleep.
Isn't it surprising that even though green, white, and blue lights seem comforting, they are not the best for sleeping? Now that you have the basic answer to your question, continue reading to learn about this subject in-depth.
Why Should Nursery Night Lights Be Red Or Amber?
One of the most important aspects when talking about sleep is the circadian rhythm. Circadian rhythm is the sleep-wake cycle. If this cycle gets interrupted, it can cause mood and sleep issues.
Blue, green, and white lights are very popular in nurseries because they are thought to be relaxing and comforting. However, the blue wavelengths of light they emit have been shown to suppress melatonin, the hormone that tells your body it's time to sleep. As a result of melatonin suppression, these lights can cause insomnia and interruptions in the natural sleep cycle.
Red and amber light have longer wavelengths. Therefore, they don't affect melatonin suppression. Because of this, they are the best to use not just for infants but for everyone.
Even using regular room lights right before bed has been shown to affect normal sleep. This makes it even more important to avoid turning the bright overhead lights on when you check your infant.
Night Light Suggestions
After reading the above, you might be wondering what night lights to use. We have researched a couple of different options to give you an example of what to look for.
Sleep Aid LED Night Light
This night light is extremely energy-efficient and costs less than 10 cents a month to run.
If you are looking for a white noise machine and night light that plays lullabies, this is the product you want.
Red LED Night Light
This light is BioRhythm safe and will protect night vision.
Baby Sleep Soother
Featuring soothing sounds and amber light, this night light is sure to promote healthy sleep.
Does Baby Need A Night Light?
Night lights are not necessary. In fact, they can affect how well you sleep. However, infants require feedings and diaper changes every few hours, and night lights can make nighttime care less disruptive. Using red night lights allows the caregiver to care for the baby without turning on glaring overhead lights. It is for this reason many parents opt for a night light.
When Should You Start Using A Night Light?
Many parents use night lights to help assist with late-night feedings in the newborn stage. After a child is no longer waking up at night, the night light becomes unnecessary.
However, at 18 months to two years old, children might develop a fear of the dark. As a result, children at this age might need a night light to help with night-time fears. To determine proper night light use, use your gut. You know your child better than anyone, so you will know if they need a night light.
How Many Lumens Is A Night Light?
Children's night lights should be between 375 lumens and 500 lumens. This is about four to seven watts.
Is It Safe To Use A Night Light All Night?
As long as you follow the manufacturer's instructions for using the night light, it should be safe to leave on all night. As a fire precaution, it is important to regularly check and make sure the night light and the outlet it is plugged into are working normally.
Are Motion Sensor Night Lights Worth It?
For parents who constantly check on a child at night, motion sensor lights can make things a lot easier. When you leave the room, you don't have to worry about the light keeping your child awake. In addition to the ease of not worrying about turning the light off, when you come into the room, you won't have to turn on the light before tending your baby.
How Can You Improve Your Baby's Sleep?
Zero Blue Light Bulbs
After reading this article, you probably have a basic understanding of how light affects sleep. Blue light tells your body that the sun is still up and that you shouldn't sleep. Television screens, computers, electronic devices, and room lights all tend to emit these kinds of wavelengths.
For this reason, it is recommended to turn off electronics an hour or two before trying to lay down to go to sleep. You can also replace light bulbs in your house with sleep-friendly bulbs to improve both your and your children's sleep. These bulbs work by emitting significantly less blue light.
Get A Regular Sleep Routine
Children and babies thrive on routine. In order to help them sleep better, it helps them to know when to expect it. A bedtime routine might include taking a bath, putting on pajamas, and then reading a bedtime story. To promote a healthy circadian rhythm, make sure they go to bed at the same time every night and wake up at the same time daily. This is most likely the most effective method, as the circadian rhythm is what dictates feeling sleepy.
Provide A Comfortable Sleeping Area
If your baby is uncomfortable, they will have a hard time sleeping. So, before laying them down, make sure the room isn't too cold or too hot. You should also check and make sure their bed is made and that the sheets aren't bunched up.
In addition to temperature, make sure there is nothing that might scare them. This could include closing the closet, making sure there's nothing that could cause shadows on the walls, and making sure the window is closed. For children who are afraid of the dark, plugging in their night light will also help prevent fear.
We have covered a lot in this post! To recap, we talked about why it is best to use red light if you choose to use a night light and made product suggestions. We also discussed a bit about circadian rhythm and the effects blue light has on melatonin production.
One thing to take away from this post is that in addition to using red night lights, another way to help sleep is to ensure optimal sleeping conditions. This includes making sure the room is free of anything fear-inducing and making sure the room is at a comfortable temperature.
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