Do you ever find your head hurting or your eyes strained after a long day of sitting in front of the computer?
This feeling of fatigue may be caused by blue light.
What is Blue Light?
Light contains a lot of rays – red, yellow, green, blue, and each vary in wavelength and energy. Blue light is a ray on the light spectrum that is visible to the human eyes. Blue light is a short wavelength which means it’s very high in energy and it’s the reason why the sky is blue. This kind of light is everywhere around us. The only source of blue light used to only come from the sun but now it is produced by digital screens (laptop, phone, etc.), electronic devices, LED and fluorescent lighting.
Natural Blue Light VS. Artificial Blue Light
Natural blue light from the sun is healthy and “They’re also a natural form that helps to regulate the body’s sleep and wake cycles, also known as your circadian rhythm.” Along with this, blue light boosts alertness, heightens reaction times, and can elevate your mood. Artificial blue light comes from digital screens and electronic devices that emit this light well after the sun has set which raises concerns about its effect on human health, specifically our eyes and quality of sleep.
Concerns About Blue Light Exposure
Since blue light has a short wavelength and high energy frequency, it flickers more easily than other types of light rays which reduces visual contrast, affecting clarity and sharpness. Additionally, “exposure to light suppresses the secretion of melatonin—a hormone that influences circadian rhythms, and there is some preliminary data that suggests a lower melatonin level might explain the association with cancer.“ This affects quality of sleep which can lead to a multitude of problems including abnormal blood sugar levels, poor eating habits, job performance, decreased energy levels, and mental health issues.
Simply put, “Our eyes have not evolved to provide filters against this type of artificial light. Prolonged exposure to blue light may lead to macular cellular damage, which may lead to loss of vision.”
Overexposure to blue light has become an increasingly concerning issue with the use of electronic devices in almost every field and area of life. The effects of blue light are affecting younger and younger generations as well. It’s important to understand the impacts so we can protect our health.
Ways to Combat Blue Light Exposure:
It’s almost impossible to combat blue light completely as it has found its way in every part of our lives from day to night, but by being more intentional, we can decrease the amount and intensity of blue light exposure. Here are best practices you can follow:
Change your monitor color to a warm color when the sun sets. This is essential! During the day, our digital screens are normally brighter and whiter, but as the sun sets so should your screens adjust to this natural change in light. Your electronic device may have a night shift or night mode which you should enable. I personally use the night mode for my phone, but I use this blue light app on my Macbook called F.Lux.
Another option is to use a blue light screen protector on your laptop or computer
Wear blue light glasses when you are working. Not only are these glasses stylish and look great on, they’re beneficial and will help protect your eyes all times of the day. The ones I own are from the SOJOS brand on Amazon. They carry a lot of chic styles, packaging is great, and the price is very affordable. Blue light glasses are available in every price range, here are our recommendations:
SOJOS Cat Eye Blue Light Glasses for Computer Eye Strain
SOJOS Blue Light Blocking Computer Glasses Round Eyewear
Blink more often
Take frequent breaks from staring at electronic devices. This will go a long way!
Keep your screens clean as this will reduce glare
Avoid using electronics 2-3 hours before bed for a restful sleep
Have you implemented enough of these healthy habits to decrease blue light exposure? Share with us in the comments below!
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