Is Blue Light from Screens Harmful?
When we spend hours in front of a screen, whether it's a TV, computer, phone or tablet, we are exposed to blue light.
The discomfort some people experience after using a screen is usually due to eye strain. Most people blink less when they look at a screen, which leads to fatigue and dry eyes.
Let’s take a look at what blue light from screens is, the potentially harmful effects it can have on our body as well as the solutions to protect our eyes.
What is Blue Light?
When we talk about blue light, we use the visible spectrum, which is a region of the electromagnetic spectrum that the human eye is able to perceive. We can receive it from natural sources such as the sun, but also from artificial sources, such as electronic devices and therefore screens.
This light is composed of rays of different colors. When visible light goes through a prism, it decomposes, showing the different rays that make it up.
Blue light has wavelengths ranging from 380 to 450 nanometers.
Not all blue light rays are harmful to our health. Blue-violet light or high-energy visible light can cause visual fatigue and stress, in addition to the premature onset of age-related macular degeneration, one of the most common causes of blindness in the world.
This light also negatively affects the cells in the macula, and these cells do not have the ability to regenerate.
The effects of blue light from screens on the body
LEDs and the screens of various devices (smartphones, tablets, computers, etc.) have a high percentage of blue light, much higher than natural light.
In addition to the fact that these devices are used at close range, very close to the eyes, the degree of exposure increases.
The use of these electronic devices has been so sudden that there has not been enough time for the body to create mechanisms to protect itself.
The brain also suffers from this light, intense as sunlight, and experiences confusion, reducing the production of melatonin, the hormone that signals your body to go to sleep. This can disrupt your sleep cycle, leading to serious health problems.
How to protect yourself effectively?
We can also use one of the different applications that exist. They allow you to integrate a yellow/orange filter on the screen to reduce the amount of blue light.
There is also a very popular solution among screen users, whether they are gamers, designers, computer scientists ... Blue light blocking glasses.
“Blue light blocking glasses filter blue light by blocking the transmission of a specific segment or range of wavelengths," says Sheri Rowen, MD, of Eyesafe's Vision Health Advisory Board.
Rowen says, "the glasses are designed to help reduce the onset of digital eye strain and prevent disruption of circadian cycles, which affect sleep and overall well-being."
Blue light glasses are typically a light yellow tint (if any color is noticeable) and block harmful blue light from screens while modulating the impact of wavelengths on circadian cycles.
If you spend a lot of time looking at your phone at night, blue light glasses can help.
"Digital screens are a major source of blue light, especially the type of blue light our bodies use to regulate sleep," says Caroline Dubreuil, Director of Product Marketing at EyeBuyDirect.
"Every time we use our digital devices, especially late at night, we are telling our brains to keep our bodies awake."
Dubreuil adds, "Research shows that wearing blue light filtering glasses three to four hours before bedtime can lead to better quality and more restful sleep."
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