Everyday we stare at a variety of digital screens such as computers, smartphones, tablets, and TVs. Living in the digital age has its perks but all that technology can be harsh on your eyes. Blue light glasses have become a trend as they claim to filter out blue light emitted from electronic devices. These glasses are supposed to be able to reduce eye strain. Do these glasses really work or are they just hype?
What is blue light?
Each type of visible light has a different color based on its wavelength and frequency. Blue light has a short wavelength meaning it produces higher amounts of energy. Digital screens are known to generate blue light, but only a small amount compared to what we are exposed to from the sun every day. Blue light is a color in the visible light spectrum that the human eye can see.
What are blue light glasses?
Blue light glasses have been designed to block out the blue light given off from digital screens. They claim to protect your eyes from prolonged exposure to blue light, reducing eye strain, improving sleep, and preventing eye diseases.
Do they work?
Yes and no. While blue light glasses are effective at filtering out blue light, there is no supporting data to suggest these glasses reduce eye issues. Eye problems from using technology are not the result of blue light. Scripps Clinic ophthalmologist, Ray Gariano, MD., says that it is okay to wear these glasses but not to be mistaken, they are not protecting you. He states that when people concentrate, they tend to blink less making their eyes dry or strained. Effects of eye strain are caused by how people use their screens, not by what is being emitted from them.
Other ways to reduce eyestrain:
- Sit about an arm’s length away from the computer screen. Position the screen so you are viewing it slightly downward.
- Use a matte screen filter to aid in reducing glare.
- Practice what is called the 20-20-20 rule. Every 20 minutes look at something 20 feet away for 20 seconds to help your eyes relax.
- When your eyes feel dry, use artificial tears or eyedrops to refresh them. This will help keep your eyes lubricated while you look at your screen.
- Adjust your room lighting so that are not looking at a bright screen in a dark room.
- If you wear contact lenses, give your eyes a break by wearing your glasses.
Save money and practice these other ways to give your eyes a break. If you are still experiencing eye strain, talk to your ophthalmologist to determine any potential eye issues that could need treatment.