Improvement of sleep is a central treatment goal for patients in a manic state. Blue-blocking (BB) glasses as adjunctive treatment hasten overall recovery from mania. This method is an evolvement from dark therapy and builds on the discovery of the blue-light-sensitive retinal ganglion cell that signals daytime to the brain. We report effects of adjunctive BB glasses on actigraphy-derived sleep parameters for manic inpatients as compared to placebo. Hospitalized patients with bipolar disorder in a manic state aged 18-70 years were recruited from five clinics in Norway from February 2012 to February 2015. The participants were randomly allocated to wearing BB glasses or placebo (clear glasses) as an adjunctive treatment from 18:00 to 08:00 hours for seven consecutive nights. Sleep and wake were monitored by actigraphy. From 32 eligible patients, 10 patients in each group qualified for the group analyses. The BB group’s mean sleep efficiency was significantly higher at night 5 as compared to the placebo group (92.6% vs. 83.1%, p = .027). The 95% confidence interval (CI) was 89.4%-95.8% in the BB group and 75.9%-90.3% in the placebo group. There were fewer nights of interrupted sleep in the BB group: 29.6% versus 43.8% in the placebo group. The BB group received less-intensive sleep-promoting pharmacological treatment and showed significantly higher sleep efficiency and more consolidated sleep as compared to the placebo group. Our findings suggest sleep-promoting effects through deactivating mechanisms. Adjunctive BB glasses seem to be useful for improving sleep for manic patients in the hospital setting.
© 2020 The Authors. Journal of Sleep Research published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of European Sleep Research Society.