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Blackout shades for the bedroom?

Discussion in 'Beginners Area' started by Hemming, Apr 13, 2014.

  1. Hemming

    Hemming New Member

    I've been thinking about getting some new blackout shades for my bedroom which would quite effectively block out all the light from the surrounding buildings. But how will that affect my natural circadian rhythm where I wake up when it gets light outside? I'm just afraid that I'll block out so much light that I wont sense the sun rising as I do now.

    Any thoughts on this issue?
    Martha Ray likes this.
  2. kovita

    kovita Gold

    we are after them as well. I can give you just a small token from my experience using a sleeping mask. I so wake up normally now around 6:30-7 am, when I keep the mask thorough the whole night, I would sleep at least 1 hour more. So definitely it is changing my sense of normal light cycle. I have as well experience from visits of my familiars in Spain. In Spain, blackout shades are a norm (at least in the area wher my familiars live). I never liked it, because I immediately (and our kids as well) change the circadian rhytm to the local one (wake up very late, go to bed very late, all meals shifted by 2-3 hours). So it is a tough call, because light from buildings around are bothering my night, but the same time the blackout shades would not roll out when the sunrise comes.You could use some electronics with timer to roll them out, but electronics...
    Hemming likes this.
  3. Hemming

    Hemming New Member

    Thanks for sharing your experiences, that is exactly what I'm concerned about too. I want no light at night but in the morning and I would prefer to keep at least my bedroom free of all electronics.

    On a side note, I also hate the Spanish circadian rhythm :)
  4. nonchalant

    nonchalant Silver

    I have blackout shades on my bedroom windows, but I keep a door ajar that gets some morning sunlight from another room. So it is pretty dark at night, but enought light in the morning to signal the sunrise.
    Freebird and Hemming like this.
  5. Hemming

    Hemming New Member

    Good workaround the issue :) Unfortunately I can't do that in my apartment.
  6. cinnamon

    cinnamon Gold

    I am very sensitive to light at night these days. If I am exposed to much that is bright, I get hunger pangs within a few minutes. I suppose that's a clue that I've successfully trained my body to think it is getting fed promptly come morning? LOL

    I put up blackout curtains, but I turn back one little corner of the curtain so there is a crack of light allowed in. I have also taken up wearing a sleep mask (though that is usually abandoned sometime in the middle of the night). The quality of daylight coming through that crack once dawn has arrived is vastly different from the artificial street lighting during the night and seems to work well to let me know it's time to get up.
    nicld likes this.
  7. Marie

    Marie New Member

    I use blackout curtains, blinds, and a sleep mask.
    Since I started sleeping on a magnetico, I wake at dawn, whether I want to ... or not.

    If you are going to start investing in yourself, I'd buy a sleep mask and a magnetico.
    SeaHorse likes this.
  8. Hemming

    Hemming New Member

    Thanks for the replies. I think I'll go for the blinds after all. They will be set up in a way that will enable some light to enter the room.
  9. Hope

    Hope Gold

    I think I've noticed something similar...or very close to it. really fascinating
  10. Martha Ray

    Martha Ray New Member

    I have your same concerns...

    I have shades and curtains in bedrooms. All curtains are 100% cotton but they are Blue- I bought before I heard about avoiding blue colored materials...that also did away with 1/3 of my wardrobe. Anyway a new tower parking lot light was added this last year that shines right into a bedroom window and mulitiple community lights were added within the past 5 years that shine into our living room and am looking for how to black out more light at night...

    Housewares are filled with toxins and all the blackout curtains I've seen have awful materials. I've not found healthy options for curtains ever ....the materials keep get worse and my wants for reasonally priced, simplistic, talored and healthy have increased. I travel with a backout mask but elastic bothers my ears so I put an old loose pair of blue blockers on to hold the mask in place. No healthy materials for masks either. I mouth tape too---
    I so sleep better but .... not feeling so natural to me.

    Had been sleeping with all doors open and that helped morning light come down the hall way.. but recently we had the fire department visit us to update our smoke detectors and they were really pushing the importance of sleeping with the bedroom doors closed as they told us most who leave their bedroom doors open, who suffer a fire, die from the smoke inhalation becasue it takes them before they wake up. Now just cracking the door so I still get the morning light.

    What the world needs now is more builders and building biologists who are savvy about circadian rhythm biology and who have a interest in building healthy homes. I like bedroom windows facing east and bedrooms built for headboard to fit on a north wall...

    I am looking for a healthy home southwest of where I am (38th latitude) and it is not an easy project. I have a boatload of criteria and a whole lot of questions. I want to remediate the home I am in to be better while we are here and for future owners and I hope someone is doing that for me as well....
    caroline likes this.
  11. Sue-UK

    Sue-UK New Member

    I had the same problem when I moved here in April, it’s the one disadvantage about the physical location. The apartment has been fitted out to throw as much light in during the day as possible, the internal door to the living room is glazed, the living room has patio doors that take up most of one wall, and all the doors have glazed panels above them. The outside lights at night affect every room in the apartment. The positioning of them makes the small glazed area of the front door shining down the hall and into our bedroom worse than the patio doors in the living room, so the front door has a blackout blind, even though we close our bedroom door at night. If DH opens the door to go for a pee in the night, without the blackout blind it would be enough to wake me. The patio doors in the living room have thick lined curtains, and the placement of the outside light and the direction the light goes indoors makes that much less of a problem, even with a glazed door to the hall.

    Our bedroom has horizontal blinds that were already there, and we added blackout blinds and blackout curtains. There is the tiniest bleed of light at the top, but it is so faint that it doesn’t bother me, if anything its better than it being pitch black with DH using a torch with a red filter on it if he needs to get up. It is possibly the very slight increase in light when the sun starts coming up that is enough to wake me, but I also use a yoga grounding mat as a runner at the bottom of the bed, which goes to the ground outside, and I think that’s what makes a difference. A mammal in a dark burrow or cave would be relying on timing signals from the changing geomagnetic field of the earth, not light.

    I still follow the yoga grounding mat practice because of what Becker said about sensing the geomagnetic field, which I think would be changing the information in the electrons coming from the earth beneath the grounding rod. I mentally connect to that when I first put my feet on the mat at night, a sort of pay attention and add intention hack.

    In Becker's book Cross Currents there is a discussion on the earth's rotation through the magnetosphere, and that any given spot on the earth's surface is in a constantly changing magnetic field. There's a diagram of the daily rise and fall in the strength of the magnetic field at one spot on the earth during a quiet period of solar activity. There's also a discussion on what is the magnetic organ, (separate from the pineal), but on the pineal, after acknowledging the retinal pathway, he says:

    "It appears that, over 2 billion years of evolution, living things have taken advantage of the two portions of the electromagnetic spectrum that could be depended upon to always be present: the geomagnetic field and visible light. In this view, it is no more surprising that life developed specific organs to sense the geomagnetic field and to derive timing information from it than that it developed specific organs to sense and derive information from light."

    "More recently, it has been shown that the pineal is also sensitive to the daily cyclic pattern in the Earth's magnetic field. Melatonin secretion in human subjects may be changed at will by exposure to steady magnetic fields of the same strength as the geomagnetic field. Apparently, nature determined that biological cycle activity was too important to be left to one environmental signal alone. "

    "Nature intended the pineal to simultaneously receive the same signals from the daily pattern of day-night and the same rise and fall in strength of the geomagnetic field. Obviously, when one or both signals are abnormal, the pineal does not respond in the normal fashion, and the body's biological cycles become disturbed - with important clinical consequences."

    It’s possible that cutting ourselves off from both signals makes it far more likely we will miss the early morning than if we just cut out light.:)
    Penny, Martha Ray and caroline like this.
  12. Martha Ray

    Martha Ray New Member

    Thank you Sue-UK got Cross Currents on my wish list. I appreciate your sensitivity as I am the same way....
    Do you recall the brands of blackout blinds and blackout curtains you got or what material they were? Although they may be different for USA where I am. I can't find materials I like and concerned about polyesters, plastics, formaldehyde, and other chemicals.

    Also wondering what dark colors are best burgundy might work for our decor. I have 6 windows all with cotton navy blue curtains to replace...oh yes and navy window shades under 3 of those windows.. they will need to be replaced too. A big project considering I'd like to move anyway.

    Somewhat related:
    Is there an opinion on head direction for sleeping? I used to think it was NORTH bit our King bed had to be set with head at South. Checking online, India and on the Body Ecology site thoughts favor head being on the East or 'if you must on the South' and not favoring West or North?

    Do you or others here have an option on that?

  13. Sue-UK

    Sue-UK New Member

    If you are considering moving, I wouldn't worry about having navy blue curtains or shades. Navy is a saturated colour, which is like the blue contained in evening light, (Alexander Wunsch alert) and if its dark in the room photons won't bounce off the colour pigments anyway. My curtains and blinds are a neutral light colour, because that is better in the daytime. At night, without photons hitting them and then being perceived by my eyes, the effect is black. My burgundy bedding is black in a blacked out room. When we had a power cut in the night on the estate which switched off the security lights, the room was so dark when I woke up in the night I thought I'd gone blind. :eek:
    Martha Ray likes this.
  14. JanSz

    JanSz Gold

    There is a trend toward solar and wind power.
    Pretty soon expect to have electricity in a day time only.
    Good idea to have a home electric generator handy, if possible, an automatic electric generator.

    electricians are people too.
    They try to sell you a system that will give them the most bang for their work.
    They try to sell you the smallest possible generator and the maximum labor time to install the thing.

    Go for the generator that would replace all energy that you could possibly need, even if only for a few seconds.
    Those few seconds are usually AC compressors.
    I have a 20 kW generator with an on/off switch (for the whole house).
    Works when I am home or not. Takes about 30 seconds to bring back interrupted power.
    That 30-second interruption screws electronics.
    There is still another backup just for the 30 seconds.

    A guy down the streets (for more of a total $$ than what I spent, got an 8 kW generator plus lots of electrical cablings that he have to operate manually).
    Lucky for me, I learned from his story so you do not have to).

    Martha Ray likes this.
  15. Martha Ray

    Martha Ray New Member

    Thank you for that input. Funny, I've had that thought before during the night before too...

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