Almost everyone has thrown over the traditional incandescent light bulb and made the switch to CFLs (Compact fluorescent lamps). In fact, the production of incandescent bulbs has now ceased completely. And while many proclaim the environmental benefit of CFLs, research has concluded that they may not be good for us.
Aside from the obvious dangers of the Mercury which CFLs contain, there is a line of inquiry regarding CFLs that is disturbing all on its own. CFL lighting is the culprit in the increasing number of insomnia cases.
Turns out that CFLs inhibit the production of melatonin, a necessary sleep hormone produced in the pineal glad of the brain. Melatonin regulates our sleep cycle, telling us when to rise and when it is time to go to bed. Without the proper amount of melatonin, we are wakeful, restless and experience insomnia.
So you might be tempted to think that CFLs in the workplace should be okay, since you want to be awake and alert during the day anyway. But no. Once again, the disruption of our natural circadian rhythm is putting our bodies into an unnatural state.
Not only that, but research has shown a link between CFLs and cancer. So exposure over long periods of time to CFLs in the workplace not only suppress the production of melatonin, it might even increase the risk of many types of cancer. And increased melatonin has been proven to help the body fight cancers like breast cancer by reducing tumor growth. So exposure to CFLs could actually make fighting breast cancer harder.
CFLs may be energy efficient but are they really environmentally friendly if they are putting our health at risk? What price tag is appropriate to put on a good healthy night’s sleep? We may have been too quick to phase out incandescent lighting before we investigated all the problems with CFLs.