Is Blue Light giving you the blues!
Today, we almost spend every waking second in front of a digital screen – be it desktops, smartphones, laptops or a TV. We constantly have our eyes glued to one screen or the other. And honestly, it’s doing more harm than good. Our eyes hurt, we feel tired all the time and have headaches.Let’s back it up and delve more into this blue light which has become such a hot topic today.
What is Blue Light?
Blue light is an HEV (High Energy Visibility) light of the visibility spectrum seen by the human eye. It is a type of light which regulates our sleep cycle. It is vital in keeping our body clock in sync with the day and night cycle called circadian rhythm.
Sources of Blue Light?
We get Blue light from almost everything – not just from man-made devices like Laptop, LED TV screens, smartphones, iPad but also from the most important source of natural light that is Sun. The sun emits white light as visible to the human eye because it is made of 7 colours known to us as ROYGBIV (Red, Orange, Yellow, Green, Blue, Indigo and Violet) and each colour has a different wavelength and energy. The two extremities of the light spectrum – UV and infrared rays are not visible to the human eye. Just above the UV rays spectrum lies the blue colour: it is high energy visibility spectrum which means they have a shorter wavelength and higher energy and prolonged exposure would harm the eyes.
What are the effects of Blue light?
Blue light has both good and dark side. Exposure of blue light during the day is good as it helps to boost the mood, makes you more attentive, helps you with memory and cognitive function and most importantly regulates the Circadian rhythm.
But today we don’t spend that much time outside and instead, we spend most of the time in front of our screens. Even though the blue light emitted from devices is lower as compared to the sun but because of proximity and time we spend in front of the screens tends to have a long-term effect on our eyes.
There are certain harmful effects of Blue light.
Excess of everything is bad and because we spend so much time in front of digital screens, we unknowingly tend to face a number of problems due to prolonged exposure of blue light.
1.) Do you feel tired even after 8 hours of a good night sleep? If the answer is Yes, it’s because of Blue light. Our busy and tech-savvy lifestyles have made us develop a habit of checking our phones before we sleep, and it might look harmless, but it affects our sleep cycle or Circadian rhythm negatively.
2.) Digital Eye Strain: We are becoming more tech-savvy day by day, the constant need to stay updated or Social Media or watching Netflix has us spending more and more time on our screens which has led to not only dry and irritated eyes, blurry visions, difficulty in focusing but backaches and pain in the neck. It not only affects the adults but children as well. Today they have more devices at their disposal than we ever had at their age. It is imperative that their exposure to digital devices is under parental control as much as possible as eyes of children are not fully developed before the age of 10.
3.) Macular degeneration: There have been many studies to understandthe permanent effect of blue light on the eyes. There has been some real evidence that prolonged exposure of blue light can, in fact, cause permanent damage to the eyes. Over a period, the exposure of blue light could lead to damage of retinal cells which ultimately cause age-related macular degeneration, which leads to loss of vision.
Apart from these problems which are glaring in our eyes : P There are some not so direct negative effects as well for example increased risk of depression, the possibility of certain types of cancer, etc. because of reduced secretion of melatonin.
If you are feeling any of these, it is high time you took care of your eyes.
Charity begins at home. There are a few ways by which we can reduce the effect of blue light on our eyes:
1.) One should take ample breaks between screen time.
2.) Reduce screen time at night as it gives us digital strain and effects our Circadian rhythm.
3.) Old is gold: The rule of 20-20-20 which means one should take break every 20 minutes and look something 20 feet away for 20 seconds.
There is a whole Blue Light Blocking Brigade to choose from in order to take care of our eyes.
1.) Blue Light glasses:We have grown up with the constant reminder from our moms to use sunscreens to protect our skin from UV rays. These rays also affect our eyes but our eyes have a defense mechanism to protect us and we wear sunglasses to nullify whatever effect is left from them. Our eyes cannotprotect us from blue light which is why we need blue light glasses*.
Indoors: There are computer glassesto protect our eyes from blue light while we stare at our screens.
Outdoors: There are options for outdoors as well, which have glarereducing anti-reflective coating which protects our eyes from both natural sunlight and digital devices.
The secret behind choosing the right blue light glasses is that it should at least block 60-70% of blue light.
2.) Photochromic Lenses: They are becoming popular day by day as they serve the dual purpose of providing seamless protection from both UV rays and blue light. These lenses automatically become darker when you step outside to reduce glare provide more comfort to your eyes.
Book an appointment with us and we will help you choose according to your needs, to give comfort to your eyes and protect them from the blue light.