Can Blue Light Exposure Heal Mild Traumatic Brain Injury?
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) contribute to about 30 percent of all injury deaths in the United States. To date, there have been few treatments that have helped to heal mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI).
New research from the University of Arizona has found that early morning blue light exposure therapy can help those who have experienced mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI) to heal.
Sleep Issues and mTBI
Research has shown the brain to repair itself during periods of sleep; however, about 50 percent of people who sustain mTBI experience issues with sleep. It is because of this that professors from the Department of Psychiatry at the College of Medicine – Tucson, were determined to discover ways to improve sleep among those who have suffered from mTBI, thus leading to a quicker recovery.
In a randomized clinical trial, adults with mTBI were given a cube-like device that shined bright blue light at them from their desk/table for 30 minutes in the early morning. Those in the control group of this study were exposed to bright amber light. The study found that the blue light corrected the individual’s circadian rhythm, which led to improved sleep and function, brain repair, and reduced daytime sleepiness.
Blue Light Suppresses Melatonin
Psychiatry professor at the College of Medicine – Tucson, William D. “Scott” Killgore, explained this phenomenon. “Blue light suppresses brain production of a chemical called melatonin,” he said. “You don’t want melatonin in the morning because it makes you drowsy and prepares the brain to sleep. When you are exposed to blue light in the morning, it shifts your brain’s biological clock so that in the evening, your melatonin will kick in earlier and help you to fall asleep and stay asleep.”
According to the study, participants fell asleep and woke up on average an hour earlier than before they engaged in the trial. Furthermore, they were less tired during the daytime and the speed and efficiency of the brain’s ability to process showed improvement. From this, alertness and cognition improved as well.
Killgore, who plans to continue his studies of this theory, believes that thoughtfully timed blue light exposure may prove very helpful for those who have suffered mTBI.
The Attorneys at Carter Mario Law Firm Can Help
If you or a loved one has suffered a traumatic brain injury or concussion due to the careless or reckless mistakes of another person, you need an experienced Connecticut Brain Injury Lawyer at your side. Let Carter Mario Law Firm protect your rights and fight to secure the full & fair compensation for your losses. Just call 203-876-2711 today. You can also submit a FREE Initial Consultation Form online.