Monday, April 26, 2010

iPad insomnia: Amazon Kindle better for your sleep than Apple tablet

With a nearly limitless library of books available for instant download, the Apple iPad is a tempting purchase for literature lovers.

There’s just one small deal-breaker: it’s bad for bedtime reading.

The device’s bright, colorful screen can get in the way of bedtime habits and encourage insomnia.

Over the weekend Frisca Yan-Go, director of the AASM certified UCLA Sleep Disorders Center, told the Los Angeles Times books won’t mess with your sleep cycle like the iPad.

“Light-emitting devices, including cell phones and yep, the iPad, tell the brain to stay alert. Because users hold those devices so close to their face, staring directly into the light, the effect is amplified compared with, say, a TV across the room or a bedside lamp, said Frisca Yan-Go, director of the UCLA Sleep Disorders Center in Santa Monica.”

So using the iPad as an eReader isn’t much different than using a laptop or watching TV in bed, both habits we recommend against.

eReaders like the Amazon Kindle, appear to be a better alternative because they don’t give off light. The gadgets e-paper, a Sony developed technology that imitates the printed page.

AASM member and UCLA Neurology Clinic Director Alon Avidan also cautioned against using electronic gadgets before bed in an email to the Los Angeles Times. He did say however, that the Kindle is better for your sleep.

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