A new study has found that people’s sleep patterns are much more strongly influenced by light fixtures in their homes than by ambient light sources.
The research, conducted by researchers from the University of Warwick, was published in the Journal of Experimental Psychology: Applied and Social Psychology.
It found that light fixtures were significantly more likely to have a significant influence on sleep, compared to ambient light.
This was despite people’s tendency to stay awake for more than seven hours a night, and to fall asleep early and remain awake for the rest of the night.
It also found that the light fixtures had a strong influence on how people slept, with people who had more fixtures were more likely than those with less fixtures to stay asleep, as measured by the number of awakenings they had.
These results may be of interest to people who use light fixtures to help keep their home looking their best, or are worried about light pollution, and could be of value to health professionals, such as health promotion professionals.
The researchers found that they had to be within 10 metres of the light fixture in order to have an effect on sleep.
In addition, the study found that there were significant differences between men and women, with women sleeping more often than men.
These findings, and others published this week, may be helpful for people who are worried that lighting may be interfering with their sleep, and those with health conditions that require sleep.
Professor Andrew Jaffe from the Department of Psychology at the University said: “Our study shows that people who sleep in light fixtures are more likely (to) wake up late and sleep less.”
“Our findings are also consistent with studies from other countries that have shown that lighting and sleep have a direct impact on sleep patterns and physiology,” he added.
“This is important because lighting is used to improve a number of aspects of health, such the overall health of people’s health.”
Light fixtures are commonly found in the homes of many people in the UK, particularly in the south-east of the country.
Professor Jaffe said that the research showed that light in the home was not necessarily an issue for sleep, as “a significant proportion of the population has light-emitting fixtures in the bedroom and bedroom furniture” which could be contributing to their sleep problems.
“These findings also suggest that there is a need to understand how lighting and bedding in the living room and bedroom affect sleep in individuals,” he said.
“Light fixtures may be an important component in reducing sleep difficulties.”