Do you find it difficult to get out of bed in the morning? Do you always press snooze on your alarm so you can a precious few extra minutes sleep, or maybe you wake up feeling even more tired than when you went to bed? If so, you may have what’s known as sleep inertia.
Sleep inertia is caused when the brain systems that cause sleep have gone out of sync, so instead of just not being a ‘morning person’ you may actually have a biological problem. Those of us who feel tired in the morning may also have a lack of energy throughout the day, feel sluggish in the afternoon and then are often wide awake when it comes to bedtime. This can be a sign that your body clock is set at the wrong time, so that the production of sleeping and waking hormones happens at times that aren’t in rhythm with your daily schedule. The use of artificial lights and those emitted from TV, laptop and smartphone screens in the evening may play a part in causing sleep inertia by confusing the brain into thinking that the sun is still up and we need to be awake.
But how do you reset your body clock and combat sleep inertia so that you feel well rested in the morning and sleepy when it comes to bedtime? Lumie has the answer!
Lumie, a company that produces bright lights for sleep disorders, has been operating since 1991 and invented the world’s first wake up light, the Bodyclock. The Bodyclock is an affordable alarm and lamp hybrid range that works by gradually increasing the intensity of light in your room before you need to wake up, simulating the light from the sun at dawn. This signals your body to increase production of the hormone cortisol (which helps you rise from bed) while decreasing the levels of melatonin in your body (which sends you to sleep) and helps to reset your body clock.
Lumie products are not merely toys, they are medical devices based on years of research into sleep disorders and are also provided to the NHS to help patients with sleep, energy and mood. The light intensity emitted from Lumie products mimics daylight closely and is independently verified to ensure it’s medical effectiveness when treating sleep inertia and SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder). Using these types of lights in the morning can help keep your sleep cycle synced to your routine as well as increasing your mood, energy levels and productivity throughout the day.
We’ve taken a look at Lumie’s most popular products to find out how they could help you with your daily waking schedule.
The Starter 30 is Lumie’s most affordable wake up light but that doesn’t make it any less effective than more expensive models. This light features a digital clock face and 30 minute sunrise simulator from the bright light at the top of the clock to wake you up naturally in the morning, plus a 30 minute fading sunset to help you get to sleep in the evening. This Bodyclock also has an optional beeping alarm that will ensure you know it’s time to get up and the bright light on the device is dimmable so can be used as a bedside light or reading lamp.
The Active 250 is a step up from the Starter 30 and features a stylish design plus much more control over the gadget. There are six time length options for both the morning sunrise and evening sunset so that they can be set to last between 15 and 90 minutes. This alarm also features a digital FM radio, plus the option of white noise or ocean waves for the evening to cover sounds that might keep you awake, and a dawn chorus for the morning sunrise to help you wake up.
In addition the lamp is dimmable so can be used as a bedside light or even a nightlight, and there’s the option to use the lamp as a security light while you’re away from your house which will turn the light on and off randomly.
The Bodyclock Elite 300 is Lumie’s top of the range wake up light with a whole host of customisable functions. There is the option to change the length of the sunrise and sunset with five different time lengths, white noise and other relaxing sounds to send you to sleep, plus the option of several sounds at sunrise including a dawn chorus, relaxing waves and rain.
The Elite 300 includes a digital FM radio as well as an SD slot to play your own MP3s. This model also features guided meditation by Meditainment, who are experts in meditation and audio for sleep. In addition there is a helpful seven day alarm setting, as well as nightlight, snooze and security options.