The best light for reading & studying
H

Halina Tseng

Published on September 28, 2021, 10:37 am

The best light for reading & studying

For most people, reading is such a therapy. Sure you can listen to calming music but nothing compares to immersing oneself in a book and break loose from the real world.

Not only this, as per a study by the University of Sussex in 2009, it was found that reading can reduce stress levels by 68% which is way more than listening to music or going for a walk.

Reading while using the best light for reading has also proved to be good for your sleep. If you use smartphones before the lights go out, then you may want to swap your devices for a good book. Why? Because the blue light from digital screens leads to shorter sleep duration and poor sleep quality.

Although using blue light glasses prevents sleep loss, it is advised to avoid the use of digital devices at night.

However, finding the best light for reading & studying could be a challenge. Whether reading a book or e-reader, it’s crucial to know why and how the right light is so important for your reading experience.


Why do you need the best light for reading?

You might think that the best light for reading & studying is the natural sunlight. While this is true, you don’t have access to it at night. And what if you’re indoors where you don’t have enough natural light? You’ll most probably use an artificial bulb or a reading lamp.

But, not all type of lights is good for your vision. Over the past century, so many different types of lighting have become available to us. And as time went by, we have come to understand the effects of different lights on your eyes and how they make you feel.

If you’re 40 or older, the best light for reading for you will be bright lights. You’ll need them to read in even if you’re using a pair of reading glasses. This happens as the size of your pupils decrease with age which also reduces the amount of light entering your eyes.


The best light for studying & reading: Warm or cool?

Now the big question is: Should you use warm lights or cool lights when reading?

Warm light has yellow or red tones and is quite relaxing to your eyes. However, it doesn’t make for a good reading environment as it isn’t bright enough.

Cold light has a white or bluish cast to it and is almost as bright as natural sunlight. For this reason, people use cold lights as they’re considered the best light for reading. These lights are also used when performing activities that require attention and concentration. Cold light will also keep your body active and prevent eye strain.

But it’s important to note that cold light is not the best light for reading at night, it will lead to the activation of your brain. It can interfere with your sleep as the brain will take the bright white light for natural sunlight. Therefore, warm light is the best light for reading & studying at night.


Why you shouldn’t read in dim lighting?

If you usually read in dim light, stop doing it for the sake of your eyes. Here’s why:

  • It puts you at risk of myopia
  • It lowers your learning efficiency

Myopia is a condition where your eyes can see close up but the distance vision is blurry. So, if you often read in dim or low lighting, then you’re more likely to suffer from myopia. In dim light conditions, your pupils have to dilate to let more light into the eyes. Thus, text or objects in the distance might appear blurry to you for a little while.

Some studies have also shown that the best light for studying also improves your brain’s ability to process and retain visual information. This will help you boost your grades at school.

However, the light shouldn’t be so bright that it causes glare as it’ll only hurt your eyes. It will prevent you from focusing and is quite distracting.

If you wear prescription glasses of any kind with an anti-glare filter, then you don’t have to worry about it. But, if you don’t have glasses, you have to choose the optimum level of brightness that’s good for your eyes and find the best light for reading.


9 best lighting tips for reading & studying

If you’re a passionate reader, then poor lighting could be a buzzkill. Your entire reading experience depends on the lighting you choose. Therefore, here are the 9 most important tips when picking the best light for studying & reading.


Mind the layout

The intensity of lights you choose has a direct impact on your eyes. The best way is to get a table lamp and point it directly to your reading material. This way, the light won’t bother your eyes and the book or text will be easier to see.

But, if you’re using an e-reader or studying online, then you should get computer glasses to prevent digital eye strain from excessive blue light exposure.


Wall paint

Apart from choosing the best light for reading & studying, the room you study or read in should not have enamel paints or shining colours on the wall. You have to avoid this as when the light will hit the shiny walls, it’ll cause glare which limits your vision.

Thus, make sure that all the walls are painted with light colours that complement the lights to have the least effects on your eyes.


Mind the layout

The intensity of lights you choose has a direct impact on your eyes. The best way is to get a table lamp and point it directly to your reading material. This way, the light won’t bother your eyes and the book or text will be easier to see.

But, if you’re using an e-reader or studying online, then you should get computer glasses to prevent digital eye strain from excessive blue light exposure.


Wall paint

Apart from choosing the best light for reading & studying, the room you study or read in should not have enamel paints or shining colours on the wall. You have to avoid this as when the light will hit the shiny walls, it’ll cause glare which limits your vision.

Thus, make sure that all the walls are painted with light colours that complement the lights to have the least effects on your eyes.


Light it up

If you use a digital screen, then you should harmonize the brightness of your device with the level of the reading lamp.

Even when you’re using the best light for reading, you should never read or study in a dark room. When your eyes have to constantly adjust between light and dark, they suffer discomfort and low concentration.


Find the best light for reading

The next thing you need is a good lighting lamp that helps your eyes while reading. There are so many models available in the market so you can select the most suitable one for you.

Make sure the additional lights complement the overhead lighting in your room to create a comfortable environment for your eyes.


Use task lighting

While some health experts would suggest you use a 100-watt reading lamp, you should go for the one that helps your eyes the most.

Flexible lights are the best light for reading as you can move them as per your requirement. This will make you less dependent on the overhead lighting that causes too much glare.


Use natural light

When possible, make sure you’re reading in natural light. It is the brightest and the least harmful to your vision. It helps your eyes to focus better and increases the production of vitamin D in the human body which slows down the ageing process and improve vision.

However, avoid staring right at the sun and make sure to wear prescription sunglasses if the UV index of your area is high. If your room doesn’t have enough natural light, use the best light for reading along with the natural light.


Use LED lights

LED lights are quite popular these days and many people believe that LEDs are the best light for reading & studying. These lights save energy and last longer than other types of lights. Moreover, LED bulbs give the brightest light no matter warm or cool.

But, the brightness of these bulbs also fades away with time. So make sure you change the batteries when you notice it


The conclusion

It could be challenging to choose the best light for reading when you have so many options at your disposal. You’ll not only illuminate your room with the best reading light but you’ll also protect your eyes from potential damage. What more does one need?

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