Objective: We evaluated the possible effects of reduced illumination in the workplace on insomnia among office workers. Methods: Seventy-two office workers answered the Athens Insomnia Scale (AIS) in July 2009 (under ordinary illumination, OI conditions) and July 2010 (under reduced illumination, RI conditions). The workers were divided into three groups, indoor workers (IWs), semioutdoor workers (SWs) and outdoor workers (OWs), according to the frequency of working outside of the office because a worker with a high frequency of working outside of the office might rarely be exposed to the lighting condition within an office. The first five items of the AIS (AIS-5) were used to assess sleep difficulties, and the last three items (AIS-3) assessed next-day consequences of sleep or daytime symptoms, which often result from insomnia and/or sleep disorders. Results: Illuminance levels at a height of 1,100 mm from the floor under the RI conditions (550-490 lux) were significantly lower than under the OI conditions (750-700 lux). The AIS-5 score of the IWs was significantly increased under the RI conditions compared with the OI conditions. There was no difference in AIS-3 scores between conditions for any group. Conclusion: Indoor workers hardly went outside of the office and were exposed only to office light during the daytime. Thus, the underexposure to light could have had an impact on insomnia in those individuals. A novel lighting environment is required to optimize work-related levels of light exposure.
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