Whenever someone mentions blue light, the first thing that would pop up in our minds are our electronic devices, like our smartphones and laptops. It is true that these devices do emit blue light.
The reason why these devices emit blue light is to enable you to see them even at times of the day where its bright and sunny. The problem with this is when you use these devices during the night.
The blue light emitted from these devices confuses your brain because it mimics the brightness of the sun, thus keeping us awake every time we look at our smartphones while lying on the bed. This confusion leads to a change in our circadian rhythm (our natural internal body clock that determines when we sleep and wake up) ultimately leading to unusual sleeping patterns.
But our electronic devices aren’t the only source of blue light. The main source of blue light is sunlight itself. Walking on the roadside during the daytime will give you plenty of exposure to it.
Have you ever wondered why the sky is blue? Well blue light emitted from the sun is responsible for it. When the light rays of the sun strike the air and water molecules within the atmosphere, it gives the cloudless sky the blue colour that we know and love.
Second, you can find blue light in common lightings like fluorescent lights and LED lights even flat-screen televisions emit blue light. These common sources however still pale in comparison with the amount of blue light emitted from the sun itself.
The long-term effects that blue light has on eye health has been a concern of many health care professionals and eye specialists as majority of the world spends much of their time staring into their phones and computers.
A reason for their concern is legitimate as the cornea and lens in human eyes does not block blue light from reaching the retina, though the cornea and lens have been proven to be effective from blocking UV rays from reaching the retina.
When we look at our computer screens and other devices that emit high amounts of blue light, it reduces contrast of what we see and contributes to digital eye strain.
This is because blue light scatters with more ease compared to other visible light. Because of this fact, blue light is not as easy to focus compared to other visible light.
Lenses that block blue light with wavelengths less than 450 nm (blue-violet light) is shown to significantly increase contrast according to research. For long periods of time, computer glasses with yellow-tinted lenses will increase comfort when viewing your computer or other digital devices.
A sensible way to deal with the blue light coming from your phone is turn on a blue light filter. This feature is available for most smartphones, though it can be also found in the latest laptops and even computers. This can protect the retina in your eyes from being exposed to blue light.
Another solution is to download the feature online. Some of these blue light filters you can find are iLLumiShield, RetinaShield (Tech Armor), Eyesafe (Health-E), Retina Armor (Tektide), Cyxus and Frabicon.
Currently in this day and age, you could buy special contact lenses with anti-reflective coatings that reduce glare and block blue light from your electronic devices and from natural sunlight.
A better version of this is photochromic lenses which can protect your eyes from blue light and UV rays. The best part about these lenses is the fact that works outdoors and indoors, ensuring the comfort of your eyes wherever you go.
If you’re not comfortable with the idea of putting on lenses, you can opt to buy glasses that can protect your eyes from blue light. This ideal if you are some who works long hours in the office.
In conclusion, is blue light bad for you? No. In fact some amount of blue light is good for you as it boosts memory, cognitive function and boost your alertness. Its only bad if you’re exposed to it for long periods of time like non-stop overtime work at the office or looking at your phone for hours on the bed before falling asleep.
30th April 22:30