Previous 1 2 Next 17 Replies Latest reply: Sep 1, 2015 7:57 AM by Mamadukem
sgilbert92 Level 1 (0 points)

Hi all,


Just curious if anyone had innovative solutions to the problem of late bedtime reading on the iPad leading to insomnia. It's been a topic in the news for a couple months, with the iPad giving off a lot of blue light, which can affect melatonin and sleep patterns. I searched the Apple Discussions but didn't see any on this topic. Off course, the search term "sleep" leads to many different kinds of discussions.


For the Mac there's f.lux, which adjusts your screen colors to remove blue light at night, but not much that I've seen for iPad.  Some websites recommend orange glasses (to block the blue). I'm thinking Zagg should produce some orange plastic screen shields that could be easily applied at night. 


A couple relevant news articles: t/ipad-could-cause-insomnia-researchers-say/



MacBook Pro, Mac OS X (10.7)
  • JimHdk Level 7 (28,340 points)

    Innovative solutions aren't necessary since there isn't any problem. Read the last part of the MSNBC article:


    Other researchers are skeptical, however, that the iPad and other electronic devices pose all that much of a hindrance to getting some shut-eye.

    "The amount of light coming off a computer or an iPad is not anywhere near bright enough to set Circadian cycles," said Michael Marmor, a professor of ophthalmology at Stanford University.

    "Outdoor light is many thousand-fold brighter than any indoor computer or ordinary room light," he said, which is why jet-lagged travelers are told to get outside to help reset and gauge their internal clocks to the local day-night norms.

    "I think people should not worry about lighting effects from either the Kindle or the iPad," said Marmor. "What will keep you awake is the news of the day ... or a really good book."

  • pdm1957 Level 1 (0 points)

    My early impression is that F.lux reduces eye strain at night.



    I would like to see a app-store version for the ipad2.


    Steve, did you find a blue-light filter (screen attachment or glasses) to your liking?



  • ajsutton Level 1 (0 points)

    I use F.lux on my iMac. It's made a huge difference in the quality of my sleep as well as reducing eye strain headaches. My understanding from the research i've read about melanopsin is that it's the color of the light that's more important than brightness. I wish that there was an iPad app that allowed my to adjust the whitepoint at night. F.lux is great, but not available as an AppStore app.

  • Menneisyys Level 4 (1,300 points)

    As programming generic screen overlays isn't allowed for AppStore apps, this could still be coded by writing individual third-party apps allowsing for "coloring" the screen - that is, using a deep red background color for, say, Web browser or PDF reader.


    You definitely should contact devs of apps that already support a similar method: applying a grey background to simulate additional darkening. This means they could add code for deep red background easily. Such apps are iCab Mobile and GoodReader, both excellent apps. Let me know if you don't have the time to contact these devs and I'll do it myself as I know them very well.


    BTW, speaking of LEDs and red lighting, feel free to ask me for more info on what's the best LED's are. I've completely switched to using high-quality LED lights at home and also use high-quality red lights for nighttime lighting. They're MUCH better for the eye than anything else, even incandescent lamps (the second-best choice for the human eye).

  • paulcb Level 6 (19,110 points)

    BTW, speaking of LEDs and red lighting, feel free to ask me for more info on what's the best LED's are. I've completely switched to using high-quality LED lights at home and also use high-quality red lights for nighttime lighting. They're MUCH better for the eye than anything else, even incandescent lamps (the second-best choice for the human eye).

    I know pretty much nothing about that.  Without me blindly Googling, any good links you can recommend?  TIA.

  • Menneisyys Level 4 (1,300 points)

    I've tested and selected LED bulbs that have pretty much red spectrum components (the best "warm" white bulbs do this by having additional red emitters in them). I've paid special attention to not using bulbs that have ANY kind of 60/120 Hz "beat effect" (the same thing as fluorescent light does - see the video at , linked from )


    In this regard, I've found LedON's dimmable lights the best: . (I haven't tested the somewhat cheaper but non-dimmable bulbs as I couldn't use those bulbs after finding out they flicker - this is why I've ordered dimmable and, therefore, surely condenser (which help in eliminating flickering)-equipped bulbs.)


    Strictly red emission-wise, I've found 938939?pt=US_Light_Bulbs&hash=item33691e813b the best. It's a Chinese bulb (as opposed to the Austrian one); however, it has been working for over half a year at least 8 hours a day (that is, night). It produces plenty of red light with using only 1W of power. Note that its non-red light flickers with 120 Hz and is, therefore, not recommended for non-red lighting at all.


    Note thtat I've emphasized Chinese. I've also ordered some cheap(er) ($10), dimmable and non-flickering warm white lamps and have been using them in not so demanding places (where the worse, red-less spectrum isn't a problem). One of them have died on me after half a year. That is, I wouldn't trust / invest in noname Chinese LED bulbs.

  • Menneisyys Level 4 (1,300 points)

    I've sent a mail to the devs of both GoodReader and iCab. Will report back when and if they add night vision support.

  • Menneisyys Level 4 (1,300 points)

    By the way, as is also explained in a relaed article at h-or-just-too-harsh-bedtime-reading , under Settings > General > Accessibility, you can also toggle the White and Black switch to invert the colors on the screen.


    Not much, but certainly better than nothing for the time we spend waiting for iCab Mobile / GoodReader to implement filtering.

  • BobbySM Level 1 (0 points)

    I have the same issue after using my iPad in bed I found it hard to fall asleep. I recently found a great solution though called SleepShield. They make blue blocking screens for all types of devices, it helps me fall asleep after using my iPad and I just got one for my kids iPhone's. Price was very reasonable and it doubles as a screen protector. Check out


    Hope this helps!



  • Mepansy Level 1 (0 points)

    Blue light is the portion of the visible spectrum that ranges from 380nm to 500nm. As you can see in the image below, my detector detects the harmful blue light emitted from my iPhone (the same with iPad screen)...I use a blue light filter app on my Android phone(, but I didn't find any iOS apps like that.




    This article introduces 10 Mac software products for eye care: r-monitor-at-night/, maybe you can give it a try.


    As an programmer who stares at multiple computer screens 8-10 hours a day, I bought a pair of computer glasses(, not sure I really need this, but feel much better when staring in front of the Mac.

  • Tossnara Level 1 (0 points)

    So how can one prevent all these things? Luckily, the solutions vary.

  • LexieLiu Level 1 (0 points)

    I also have the same problem, so I dropped my iPad away before sleep. It's all about blue light emitted from iPad screen. Not from iPad screen, also including computer, smartphone, iPhone, TV, Kindle, LED light, they can all emit blue light which can block melatonin production and hurt our retina. Here is the source: How Blue Light is Wrecking Sleep?

    The best way to improve our sleep is to reduce the time on staring at these digital devices.

  • Briansyddall Level 5 (6,765 points)

    Hi Why not just, leave iPhone, /Ipad in another room Switch, off or buy a good case? Cheers Brian

  • 5humb4 Level 1 (0 points)

    Blue light is a known factor in the development of Age Related Macular Degeneration. Professor John Nolan of the Waterford Institute of Technology is the leading expert in this field and has publlished many papers on the topic. Read the following extract from

    With the introduction of smart phones, tablets and other handy electronics, eyes are exposed to harmful light spectrums now more than ever. In fact, our eyes are exposed to harmful high energy blue light and UV rays more often than many of us realize. That’s right, blue light is not only a threat outdoors! Even inside blue light hazard is often present. Fluorescent, CFL and LED bulbs all have a high blue spectral emission; and if you’re reading this via your smart phone or computer, you’re more than likely being affected by the blue light coming from your LCD screen.

    So why exactly is blue light so threatening? To put it simply, blue light causes gradual oxidation and deterioration of the macula and leaves eyes more susceptible to macular degeneration, contrast sensitivity and issues with glare. Thus, it’s particularly imperative that those who work or play in the sun, construction workers, office workers, farmers, truck drivers, athletes and beach goers (to name a few) protect their eyes appropriately against this hazardous light.

    That being said, it may occur to some that a pair of sunglasses should suffice for eye protection. However, misleading claims about shades providing UV protection can be confusing. In fact, most labels don’t indicate exactly how much UVA and UVB rays they block. Plus, many eye wear brands don’t even mention blue light on their labels. And while for years doctors prescribed UV blocking lenses as a method to guard against this harmful light, it is now possible to get prescription lenses that have wavelength selective light filtration (or, the ability to filter blue light specifically). Investing in a pair of quality blue-filtering eye glasses and sunglasses for year round use is one of the best things you can do for your eyes.

Previous 1 2 Next