Blue light is just one of the colors on the visible light spectrum. It has a very short wavelength, but high energy levels. Our largest and most natural source of it is the sun. Our bodies need some blue light to operate properly. Blue light helps to control our sleep-wake cycle, improves our mood, and boosts our cognitive function. However, blue light is also emitted by other sources including digital devices. Increased use of things like smartphones, laptops, and tablets over the last decade or so has led to most of us receiving more blue light than we really need. Research suggests that this could potentially increase our risks of experiencing a number of different issues. These include:
Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is the most common reason for vision loss in people over the age of 50. It occurs when part of the eye, the macula, becomes damaged with advancing age. Since the macula is responsible for central vision, people with AMD can find that their ability to see fine details can deteriorate.
If you use a digital device for long periods of time, you are at risk of developing digital eye strain – a condition that often occurs as a result of increased intense concentration and less frequent blinking. Common symptoms include dry eyes, soreness, eye fatigue, blurred vision, and headaches.
As we mentioned before, the right amount of blue light can help to elevate mood, boost concentration and ensure you get enough sleep. However, too much has been proven to interfere with the stability of these things. If your sleep-wake cycle becomes interrupted by too much blue light, you could experience insomnia, daytime fatigue, reduced concentration, mood swings, irritability, poor memory, and more.
Blue light blocking glasses have special lenses designed to filter out the blue light that is emitted by digital devices before it reaches our eyes. Different blue light lenses can block out different percentages of blue light, so it’s always best to choose a variety that offers the greatest level of protection – ideally 95-100%. At the current time, there have not been many studies into the effectiveness of blue light blocking glasses, but since they cannot damage your eyes or vision in any way, many people who spend a large amount of time using digital devices prefer to err on the side of caution and wear them.
Blue light lenses usually have a very subtle yellow tint to them which helps to counteract the blue light. They are widely available and can be incorporated with a comprehensive range of prescriptions to suit the needs of the individual. Alternatively, blue light blocking lenses can be bought prescription-free for those patients who do not require a glasses prescription, or who would like the benefit of blue light blocking glasses while also wearing contact lenses.
If you would like to learn more about blue light, blue light blocking lenses, and their effectiveness, our dedicated optical team at International Opticians in Miami, Florida would be happy to answer any questions that you have. Please get in touch with us by calling (786) 460-1081 today.