You’re probably familiar with the research coming out that points a finger at blue light (high energy visible light) as the cause of many different problems. While it may be easiest to chalk it up to a wives’ tale of “too much screen time is bad for you” and continue on bringing our favorite shows, coding hours on end, or staying up until 3am playing online with your friends; there is actually a large amount of definitive evidence telling us that too much blue light irritates the eyes, can damage them, and disrupt sleep. But how much is too much? Do YOU need blue blocking glasses? Here are three signs that you might want to look into a blue light solution.
You spend more than 10 hours a day looking at a screen:
Research suggests that prolonged over-exposure to blue light may increase the risk of eye disease, especially the early onset of age-related macular degeneration. The average american spends about 50/168 hours in a week engaged with a screen (yes that includes tablets, computers, TVs, and even your phone). While there’s no scientifically proven threshold of screen usage that marks a cross-over into “too much” territory, spending the majority of your waking time staring directly into a backlit screen is probably a good place to start.
You experience any of the following symptoms:
- Sore, tired, burning or itching eyes.
- Watery or dry eyes.
- Blurred or double vision.
- Sore neck, shoulders or back.
- Increased sensitivity to light.
- Difficulty concentrating.
- Feeling that you cannot keep your eyes open.
These are all symptoms of Digital Eye Strain-- irritation caused by looking at a screen for too long. While the elimination of high energy wavelengths is only part of the puzzle (eye drops and proper ergonomics can help, too) it is definitely one of the most powerful steps that you can take to eliminate this irritation.
3) You have trouble sleeping.
It is proven that exposure to blue light causes your brain to stop making melatonin. This is because blue light’s most abundant natural source is the sun. Your eyes see blue light, tell the brain it’s daytime, and your brain stays awake. Using blue blocking lenses or a low-blue bulb before bed can help your brain to make melatonin as you get ready for sleep, helping to regulate the circadian rhythm and allow for a deeper rest.
There are a lot of products out there in all of these categories. Fortunately there is a company that’s trying to bring together only the BEST products into one compact, comprehensive solution. Learn more about blue light, how it affects you, and the available solutions from PupilBox on their Kickstarter Page, here.