Increased Screen Time: Are Blue Light Blocker Glasses the Solution?
Sales of blue light blocker glasses have more than doubled since the first lockdown, according to eyewear brands.
This is likely explained by the fact everyone’s screen time has increased dramatically since the outbreak of the COVID pandemic.
And with it ...
more time spent at home, employees working remotely, Zoom dates and meetings, endless scrolling on our phones from boredom...
A recent poll by Ofcom reports that
“Adults spent 40% of their day in front of a screen during the height of lockdown , a rise of almost a third (31%) on the previous year.”
We are aware there are many health hazards to large amounts of screen time, not least to our eyes.
This results in strained eyes, increased headaches, poor sleep...
It’s reported that 75% of people who work from their laptops have Computer Vision Syndrome.
The obvious answer to the dilemma is: decrease your screen use time. But that’s just not realistic for everyone.
The 20-20-20 rule comes recommended by doctors and eyesight associations alike. It says, every 20 minutes of screen time, look at something 20 feet away for 20 seconds.
Maybe additionally, you can wear blue light blocker glasses. We investigate this growing trend and assess its merits.
What is blue light?
After sunset, our body begins to produce melatonin. This happens naturally in the absence of sunlight, and primes our body to start getting ready for sleep.
But by spending time looking at screens we are inviting blue light into our lives much more often than is natural or necessary.
This can have a serious impact on our body.
What's the damage?
Opinions diverge on the topic of how much damage too much exposure to blue light causes. There are two main points:
Blue light is detrimental to sleep
Avoiding blue light exposure nearer to bedtime improves sleep quality.
Blue light blocks the body’s natural production of melatonin.
Studies have shown that using blue light blocking methods after sundown enables better quality sleep. It does this by allowing the body’s melatonin production process to resume to a normal level.
Think about it. Before technology and LED lights became omnipresent, humans were exposed to the sun’s blue light only during the daytime, and barely, if at all, after sundown.
The effect of poor/insufficient sleep has many known negative effects on our health, (including the eyes).
Blue light could harm your eyes
This is where there’s the most conflict.
The American Academy of Ophthalmology has gone on record saying there's no scientific evidence and they do not believe exposure to our screens' blue light causes damage to the eyes.
Yet emerging studies are in disagreement, and the reviews from users are clear: they reported more relief and less headaches.
What we do know is that screen time has increased considerably over the years - and particularly during the pandemic. This begs the question of whether we really understand the effects of this amount of screen time on our eye health - and overall health.
We also know that blue blocker glasses warm the light, providing a more relaxed vision. This relieves the eye strain that occurs when staring at a screen for long periods of time. And that, we all agree, is something that damages our eyes over time.
Are Blue Blocker Glasses the solution?
Blue light blocker sales have sky-rocketed this past year. If you want to jump on the bandwagon, make sure you're informed so you can pick the best glasses for you.
Your choice will depend on your needs and lifestyle.
If you look at screens a lot in the evenings, you’ll want to block more blue light the closer you get to bedtime.
Blue light exposure is important during the daytime, so orange or red lenses aren't recommended during the day.
You can also do a blue light sensitivity test.
Do blue light glasses help with increase screen time?
So the research is inconclusive on whether or not blue light directly damages your eyes. But we do know it's detrimental to your sleep, which in turn can damage your eyes... and so much more!
Using blue light blocking glasses lets you control the amount of blue light you’re exposed to, and when. This can be very helpful if your lifestyle or commitments don't allow you to cut down on or control your screen usage times.
Using blue light blocker glasses comes with zero side effects, and only benefits.
Research progress about the effect and prevention of blue light on eyes.