What is Blue Light?
Blue light is a color in the visible light spectrum.
Without getting into complicated physics, there is an inverse relationship between the wavelength of light rays and the amount of energy they contain. Light rays that have relatively long wavelengths contain less energy, and those with short wavelengths have more energy. Blue light is a short wavelength, which means it produces higher amounts of energy.
Light wavelengths are measured in nanometers (nm). Blue light resides in the range from 400-500nm.
How are people exposed to Blue Light?
Blue light is everywhere in our world. It used to be that the only source of blue light was from the sun. Now we have brought blue light inside by the way of digital screens (found on TV's, smartphones, computers, laptops, tablets and gaming systems), electronic devices, LED and fluorescent lighting. Blue light is beaming at us from all directions!
Are there any benefits to Blue Light exposure?
Without even thinking about it, your body uses blue light to regulate your biological clock, or sleep/wake cycle. Blue light also plays a role in basic functions of the human brain such as alertness, memory, emotion, and cognitive performance. In certain conditions, light therapy using the correct wavelengths of blue light is known as an effective treatment helping people of all ages.
What are the negative effects of Blue Light exposure ?
As one of the shortest, yet highest energy wavelengths in the light spectrum, the blue light flickers easier and longer than other types of weaker wavelengths. This flickering casts a glare that reduces your visual contrast, affecting clarity and sharpness. Scientific research has linked blue light to the onset of digital eye strain in as little as two hours of exposure. Blue light can help elevate your mood and boost awareness, but chronic exposure to blue light at night can lower the production of melatonin, the hormone that regulates sleep, and disrupt your circadian rhythm. Harvard researchers have linked working the night shift and exposure to blue light at night to several types of cancer (breast, prostate) diabetes, heart disease, obesity and an increased risk for depression. And according to The Vision Council, more than half of all Americans experience symptoms of;
- Dry Eyes - Blurred Vision
- Tired Eyes - Sore Eyes
- Headaches - Watery Eyes
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.
The medical profession is concerned about the exposure level of blue light for adults and children. Here are some interesting statistics:
How does Blue Light exposure effect sleep?
Blue light exposure turns off the production of melatonin in the brain.
Tips, tricks and things you can do to protect yourself and your kids from too much Blue Light exposure.
You can minimize the amount of blue light that enters your eyes by wearing glasses that filter some of these harmful rays. Morris Eye Group offers a high quality blue light lens that eliminates a portion of the short wavelength blue light.
Children’s eyes are particularly vulnerable to the effects of blue light as virtually all of the blue light they are exposed to passes through their cornea and lens, and reaches the retina. Coupled with a high amount of screen time, this puts them at risk for over-exposure to blue light that may prove to have long-term consequences. Recommended below are some safe technology habits for you and the entire family: