Do you use your computer or other digital device at night? If you’re not aware of the effect doing so might have on your eyes, this post explores this topic and presents solutions.
If you have more questions about how to best protect your eyes or you’re looking for eye care services in Cape Cod, contact the professionals at Bayview Optometrics for more information or to schedule an appointment.
What is blue light?
Different colored rays of light—red, orange, yellow, green and blue—exist along the visible light spectrum. Blue light rays have shorter wavelengths and more energy and can present benefits, as well as dangers.
While much of our exposure to blue light comes from the sun during daylight hours, we may also be exposed while indoors to man-made sources of blue light, including LED and fluorescent lighting and flat-screen televisions.
Blue light, computers and our eyes
In particular, computer display screens, smartphones and other digital devices produce a substantial amount of blue light. While this amount is small compared to how much blue light the sun emits, the amount of time that many of us spend on our computers and other devices can negatively affect our eyes in the form of digital eye strain.
Additionally, because blue light can travel to the retina (the inner lining in the back of one’s eye), studies have uncovered that excessive exposure to blue light can result in the damage of cells in the retina that are sensitive to light.
Why can nighttime be dangerous for computer usage?
Beyond eye strain that we may experience at any time during the day as we use our computers or other devices, we may also experience specific negative effects at nighttime. Blue light plays a vital role in helping us to maintain a regular circadian rhythm (the wakefulness and sleep cycle that our bodies naturally follow). If we are exposed to blue light during the day, this helps our bodies to continue on our existing circadian rhythm.
On the other hand, if we take in too much blue light at night, such as from a computer, tablet, e-reader or other device, we may experience a disruption to our circadian rhythm. In turn, this may lead to fatigue during the day and sleeplessness at night.
To ensure that your body maintains a stable circadian rhythm, try to expose yourself to blue light during the daytime and avoid it at nighttime. You can also try computer glasses, which may help reduce blue light exposure from computers and other electronic devices while maximizing your comfort.
You might also find it helpful to use a blue light filter. This can be used for computer screens, tablets and smart phones and prevents large amounts of blue light from reaching your eyes. The visibility of the display remains the same.
For questions about protecting your eyes or to make an appointment for eye care in Cape Cod, contact Bayview Optometrics at 508-477-7423 today! Our expert staff is here to help you keep your eyes well protected for years to come.