Software to help you sleep when using computers

Computer software to help you sleep

Do you constantly work on a computer especially at night (like I do)? Are you having problems sleeping and not getting the recommended 7-8 hours of sleep per day?

Did you know that “…light from screens in the evening alters sleepiness and alertness, and suppresses melatonin levels”? You need to “avoid use of light-emitting screens before bedtime and for those who must use computers or other light-emitting devices in the evening, software or other technology that filters out the blue light may help.” (from the Huffington Post article, ““Reading on a Screen Before Bed Might Be Killing You.”)

I was having difficulty sleeping with the bright lights from my computer and other devices until I installed f.lux.

BENEFITS OF USING F.LUX:

  • It automatically adjusts the color of my screen based on the time of day and your location:
    • Daytime color mimics the sunlight during the day and the screen is the typical bright computer screen you are accustomed to using.
    • Sunset color adjusts when the sun is setting and has warmer tones on your computer screen.
    • Bedtime color (as shown in the screenshot below) takes out the blue light (which prevents you from falling asleep).
  • Once you set the time you typically wake up, f.lux automically calculates how much sleep you need (7-8 hours) and gives you reminders of how many hours until you wake up.

Flux Screenshots

HOW F.LUX HAS CHANGED MY WORK HABITS ON THE COMPUTER

Personally for me, the automatic color change of my computer screen helps me to feel sleepier. Before using f.lux, when I was awake late at night, I could work on my computer for hours. I didn’t realize the color of my screen was keeping me awake! Now that I use f.lux, I get tired working in the sunset mode and have finally been able to turn off my computer at a decent hour to get at least 7 hours of sleep.

Of course there will be days when you have to work late, but when I do I still use f.lux and work with the bedtime color. With the bedtime color mode, my eyes feel tired while I’m working which serves as a reminder for me to get my work done as quickly as possible so I can go to sleep. I try to do the main bulk of my work, and save any secondary tasks for the next morning when my screen is in daytime mode. Of course I can always turn my screen back into daytime mode even if I’m working at midnight but choose not to do that since I’m making a conscious effort to protect my sleeping hours.

PROTECT YOUR SLEEP

When I’m not on my computer, I end up wearing orange tinted goggles to help eliminate blue light from devices such as a tablet, phone, or television. Wearing goggles at night is not ideal but I do it so I can sleep at an acceptable hour.

I’m making sleep more of a priority in my efforts to lead a healthier lifestyle. I want to make sure I can get at least 7 hours of sleep every evening. It will be a constant battle to make sure I get enough sleep every night. Since using f.lux I’ve been able to do it at least twice last week which is a big achievement for me. I’ve also started to shut down my computer at 9 or 10pm at the latest which is a big deal considering my computer was always on past 1am.

CELEBRATE YOUR SMALL WINS

Even if my progress regarding sleep doesn’t seem like a big deal to most people, I know that I made huge strides in changing my sleeping habits. Turning off my computer at 9 or 10pm is a big win for me. I know that making small changes to my daily routine will eventually get me to my goal of sleeping 7 to 8 hours per night consistently.

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