Light exposure to be measured in ADHD children

A small study coordinated by Heriot Watt University in Edinburgh will collect data from children with learning difficulties to see if there's a link between blue light exposure and their sleep patterns. Researcher Amanda Nioi said "While there is evidence of the impact of increased blue light on older people and adolescents, findings of the effect of blue light exposure in children with ASD and ADHD is very limited." 

Children with Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD) or Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) often don't get enough quality sleep and this can have a profound impact on their daytime behaviour. In fact, one study found that treating the sleep problems may be enough to eliminate attention and hyperactivity issues for some children.

In the proposed study, five boys at the same school will wear acti-watches throughout the day and night which record both their movement and the surrounding light level. Blue light is especially good at making you feel awake so it's great to get some - either naturally or from a light box - during the day; not so good to have it shining out of your tablet and into your eyes just before you need to sleep. The acti-watches will pick up this behaviour and the results could also prove interesting in the ongoing debate about the amount of time children in general spend on computers and gadgets as opposed to doing something outdoors.

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