Risks Of Blue Light
The Schepens Eye Institute demonstrated that a low density of macular pigment may represent a risk factor for AMD by permitting greater blue light damage.
Recent research indicates a strong link between exposure to blue light and incidences of Cataracts.
Blue light causes less contrast to be visible to the human eye, this causes more strain on our eyes. This is particularly common with people who work most of the day on the computer.
Blue Light Protection
Nowadays, most of us spend many hours a day sitting in front of a modern TV, computer screen, tablet, or smartphone. The light from the screen of these digital devices has adverse effects on our retina, and the long-term effects are still unknown. If you spend hours a day in front of a screen, sooner or later, you are likely to feel discomfort in your eyes including soreness, fatigue, and blurriness.
At Clayton Heights Optometry in Surrey, British Columbia, we provide our patients with sophisticated blue light blocking lenses that can shield your eyes from direct exposure to blue light.
Sunlight consists of various colors of light. This includes orange, yellow, red, green, indigo, blue, and violet light. When combined, they form white light. Each of these colors corresponds to a different wavelength of light. The shorter the wavelength, the higher the energy. Blue and violet light have the shortest wavelengths on the visible light spectrum, sitting just below the ultra-violet wavelengths in terms of energy output.
This is what we expose our eyes to whenever we stare at the screen of our digital devices. Prolonged exposure strains your eyes, messes with your sleep cycle, and likely causes serious long-term damage.
Sunlight is the largest source of blue light. Other sources include:
- LED light
- Fluorescent light
- CFL (Compact Fluorescent Light) bulbs
- Flat screen LED televisions
- Computer monitors, tablet screens, and smartphones
No. Some blue light exposure is important as it helps regulate our sleep and helps stave off depression and Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). The best way to get helpful levels of blue light is to go outside during the day and spend some time out of doors.
The problem with blue light from digital devices is that it is a lot of focused and continuous blue light in a way we don't experience in nature. It is this kind of exposure which is causing problems and worrying optometrists.
Is my Digital Device Screen Dangerous to my Eyes?
Our eyes absorb light. Light on high-energy end of the visible spectrum is typically called blue light. This light goes through the cornea and lens, directly into the retina. This can cause long-term damage and possibly cause your eyes to age prematurely. In addition, studies have shown that overexposure to blue light can cause oxidative damage to the back of the eyes which has the potential to lead to macular degeneration as we age. Some of the dangers of blue light on the eyes include:
Blue light from digital devices and computer screens can reduce contrast. This causes digital eye strain. Dry eyes, fatigue, bad lighting, and the way you sit in front of your computer can also contribute to eye strain. Typically, you will feel discomfort, soreness, and perhaps blurred vision. At times, you may find it difficult to focus.
Recent studies have shown that overexposure of the eyes to blue light can damage the retinal cells. This may lead to vision issues such as age-related macular degeneration which eventually leads to permanent loss of vision.
This is a concern especially in children who are starting on digital devices at a much younger age and will be on them cumulatively more that the previous generation. As children are still developing their retinal pigments, they have less ability to fight oxidative stress.
Exposure to excess blue light at night through indoor lighting, digital devices, or computer screens is proved to disrupt the circadian rhythms that regulate our sleep patterns. It tricks your internal clock into thinking that it is the middle of the day. This causes difficulty in falling asleep, insomnia, and daytime fatigue.
Research shows that overexposure to blue light reduces melatonin production. Melatonin is a hormone that affects our bodies circadian rhythms, which regulate sleep among other processes. Recent experimental evidence at Harvard University also indicates a correlation between lower levels of melatonin and the associated frequency of cancer.
Blue Light Blocking Lenses at Clayton Heights Optometry
To help prevent long-term damage to your eyes, our Port Elgin Vision Center provides state-of-the-art blue light blocking lenses and lens coatings for both children and adults. This will help protect your eyes from exposure to blue light and allow you to use your digital devices more comfortably. Our blue light blocking lenses include Nikon SeeCoat Blue and Hoya Recharge, considered the two best options on the market.
These computer glasses have a patented blue light protective coating that blocks out a significant portion of the high energy blue light from LED devices. They come in fashionable styles for women, men and children in prescriptions ranging from plano to +3.00. These are available at Clayton Heights Optometry!
These protect your screens from scratches as well as from blue light. As of now, they are available for most apple products and limited Samsung products. These are also available at Clayton Heights Optometry!
Next time you get a new pair of glasses, ask for a blue light protective coating on your lenses. Most retailers will be able to provide this for your lenses.
What else can we do?
- Reduce Glare -Adjust the brightness of your screen. Consider changing your background colour from bright white to cool gray. Glare reduction filters for computer screens are also available.
- Clean Your Screen – A dust-free, smudge-free screen helps reduce glare
- Dim Surrounding Lights -Reduce the amount of light competing with your screen. Dim indoor lighting and when outside try to avoid using your device in direct sunlight
- Adjust Your Screen – Keep handheld devices a safe distance from your eyes and just below eye level.
We, at Clayton Heights Optometry, are proud to be Certified Blue Light Protection Specialist by Hoya Lab Come in to discuss your preventative options!