Exposure to bright light "improves alertness"

Exposure to bright light "improves alertness"

Exposure to very brief, millisecond flashes of bright light improves alertness at night, according to the results of a new study.

Research published at an annual meeting of the Associated Professional Sleep Societies LLC, shows that subjective sleepiness decreased and objective nighttime alertness improved after participants of the study received a two-millisecond pulse of bright light once per minute for 60 minutes.

Principal investigator Dr Jamie Zeitzer, assistant professor in the department of psychiatry and behavioural sciences at Stanford University, commented: "We found it shocking that light exposure as brief as a few milliseconds could engender changes in alertness and brain wave activity."

He added that the results may change the manner in which experts think about the brain"s capacity to respond to light.

by Adrian Galbreth

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