What is Blue Light?
Blue light is among the colors in the visible light spectrum. When combined with other colors, they form light. For example, natural white light appears when the sun is shining. Since blue light has a shorter wavelength, it can affect the eye's retina or the layer of cells lining the back of your eyes. This part is responsible for your vision and sending signals to your brain about what you see. Prolonged exposure to blue light can lead to higher light sensitivity and can cause retinal damage over time.
Prolonged screen time is one of the main culprits of blue light exposure today. However, it is also linked to other factors that can cause eye strain and damage, such as reduced blink rate and eye dryness. You can take several steps to minimize eye strain, and there are devices designed to block blue light exposure to the eye, such as blue light-blocking glasses.
Before investing in a pair, take the time to learn more about what they do and how they work against blue light.
Health Impact of Blue Light Exposure
The following are some of the known impacts that blue light exposure causes to your health, not just your vision:
- Visual tiredness throughout the day
- Difficulty falling asleep at night
- Frequent headaches
- Low sleep quality
- Retinal degradation
- Increased vulnerability post-eye surgery
What Are Blue Light Blocking Glasses?
Blue light-blocking or blue light glasses are manufactured to filter out blue light. The lens has a coating to filter out blue light and reduce its damage to the eyes. If you think your symptoms are due to blue light exposure, you can wear such a device to provide extra eye protection.
Since blue light is emitted by digital devices, such as computers and smartphones, you should wear these glasses when using said devices. You should also wear them when spending time outdoors, especially if you don't have any sunglasses on. And lastly, blue light glasses are ideal when exposed to LED bulbs, whether at home or elsewhere.
Do Blue Light Blocking Glasses Work?
If you are experiencing any symptoms of blue light exposure, such as eye strain and headaches, wearing blue light-blocking glasses can ease your symptoms. Of course, it is not the only way to prevent or alleviate those symptoms, but protecting your eyes with a filtering material is a substantial first step.
Blue light glasses are widely in demand due to increased reliance on digital devices like computers and smartphones. But do they work? Are they effective in preventing or reducing the likelihood of digital eye strain?
The answer is yes. You are more likely to find relief from eye strain when wearing blue light-blocking glasses, especially when compared to not wearing these glasses at all while using the computer or your phone.
Reduce Eye Strain
Eye strain is the most common complaint for anyone who spends a lot of time looking at digital screens. Wearing blue light glasses lowers eye strain by filtering the blue light that can damage your retina over time. The less blue light your eyes are exposed to, the less eye fatigue you are likely to suffer. And it also means that any other symptoms associated with eye strain, such as headaches and blurred vision, will be significantly reduced.
Improve Sleep Quality
An indirect benefit of using blue light glasses is improved sleep quality. Too much blue light exposure, especially close to bedtime, can affect your sleep rhythm. It could make it difficult for you to fall asleep, or be more likely for you to have sleepless nights.
Wearing blue light glasses when working on a computer or smartphone helps limit blue light exposure. It also helps reduce the use of computers and other devices that emit blue light close to bedtime. This preventive step will help you fall asleep faster and sleep better.
Slow Down the Macular Degeneration
The long-term benefit of wearing blue light-blocking glasses is that you can slow down the rate of degeneration of your retina. Although this area needs more research to support the claims of how prolonged blue light exposure could facilitate the degradation of the retina, it’s best to err on the side of caution. Nevertheless, you should wear blue light-blocking glasses to preserve your vision and eye health.
Should You Invest in Blue Light Blocking Glasses?
Blue light-blocking glasses are making waves in the market right now. They are a good solution for anyone suffering from chronic headaches and eye strain because of staring at a computer screen for several hours a day. If this sounds like you, there is no harm in wearing them, even if there were more research studies to support their effectiveness.
Using any measures to protect against blue light exposure is better than nothing. You should wear them when using digital devices to reduce the possibility of suffering from eye strain.
Blue light-blocking glasses might not work for everyone, but they can effectively prevent potential eye damage. They can also reduce the impact of prolonged exposure to blue light, especially if your work involves using a computer or smartphone for several hours daily.
Blue light glasses are not a one-size-fits-all solution to eye strain, nor do they claim to be. It would help if you also incorporated changes to your habits when using digital devices to reduce stress, such as reducing the time you spend using digital screens.
It's also important to note that blue light isn't the only factor you should be wary about. It is only one factor under what is collectively known as computer vision syndrome (CVS). This syndrome brings about symptoms like light sensitivity, headache, watery eyes, dry eyes, and burning eyes. Focus on improving the overall ergonomics of your workstation to prevent these other symptoms.