Nov. 8, 2022 - While it's been talked about in popular media for years, the research is beginning to highlight concrete examples: Yes, artificial circadian light — illumination that mimics the color temperature of sunlight (or lack thereof) throughout the day and night — may impact sleep and other wellness factors in humans. The impact of exposure to sunlight and how it affects us is outlined in this fairly comprehensive article from 2019 published by the U.S. National Institute of Health: Effects of light on human circadian rhythms, sleep and mood.
Among other findings, the article points out the detrimental effects of "smartphone light" exposure before bed, for example. The good news: There's a growing body of evidence that human-centric lighting solutions really may be quite beneficial. Some examples:
The Rest of the Solution
Of course, shading is another aspect of lighting, and introducing more natural light into a space during the day is certainly beneficial. As Crestron's Residential Products Manager, Victor Menendez, told us earlier this year:
"When you're doing a design, you first start with daylighting. You illuminate everything and anything that you can with daylight and then you supplement light based on the needs for those areas." Does the space demand ambient, task, or accent light beyond the daylight coming in?
Another factor that affects the design is a simple one: paint. Menendez quotes a paper titled Circadian Effects of Daylighting in a Residential Environment: Simply put, white paint brightens a room so much so that it's akin to adding no less than 55 circadian "days" to a building's daylight cycles.
Nighttime is a different story, naturally. From our partners at Delos:
Blackout shades can help eliminate outdoor light pollution to support a darker sleep environment. You can choose smart shades (or program regular shades to be controlled by automated home assistants) to automatically align with your bedtime and wake-up time – for a ready-to-go sleep sanctuary!
Automated lighting and shading solutions are all available via the Crestron Home® platform — and Crestron's new lighting fixtures are the right delivery devices for a completely tunable circadian experience. "Utilizing the Crestron Home OS and pairing our new LED fixtures and shading solutions together means that you can always put lighting at the heart of any solution," says Michael Short, Crestron's senior director of residential and hospitality marketing. "Products work better when designed to work together, and this is exactly what our lighting, shading, and control of those solutions do." Additionally, a platform that can automate these solutions adds another benefit. For example: Sun streaming in and creating screen glare in your home office? Imagine a one-touch solution that closes the shades while tuning interior fixtures to mimic sunlight. "There are literally endless use cases for lighting and shading optimized to support your circadian rhythm," he says.