The color of light you use at work could be causing you to feel tired and lazy – especially if you’re using fixtures with warm or reddish tones. In the past decade, numerous studies have shown the effects of lighting systems on productivity at the workplace.
In a nutshell, researchers were able prove that high-color temperature lamps with slightly bluish colors can help workers feel more alert and focused. By comparison, low-color temperature units, with reddish or dim characteristics, contribute to comfort and melatonin production.
But is it really that simple? Find out below.
Productivity and Lighting
Blue LED lights reduce tiredness by blocking our body’s ability to create melatonin. The hormone is primarily responsible for regulating natural sleeping patterns. Red LED lights have the opposite effect on humans. Exposure to this light color can cause individuals to feel sleepy and relaxed.
With this in mind, low color temperature LED fixtures are ideal for breakrooms, which can help promote adequate rest. Conference rooms can benefit from mid-color temperature lights. This neutral range is perfect for creating a welcoming meeting place.
From a practical perspective, it is not possible to mimic the same lighting conditions used in studies related to blue light and productivity. Most trials required a participant to be exposed to a powerful lamp for long periods of time, in some cases as long as 6.5 hours. Workers, including in commercial offices, aren’t usually that idle.
Moreover, direct exposure to blue light can cause headaches and eyestrain, when glare is created in the workspace. In order to improve productivity with blue LED lights, it is recommended to stick with high-color temperature fixtures in the range of 5,500K and 8,000K. Lastly, if your work station is near a window, it is important to strike a balance between natural sunlight and artificial lighting.