Do you really need blue light glasses ?

Photo by OhTilly on Unsplash

You might have noticed that there is now a slew of products marketed around “blue light” protection. From screen protectors to special bulbs, we are becoming more and more wary of our exposure to this type of light. We are also seeing the popularity of “blue light glasses” rise. They are marketed for individuals who don’t need prescription glasses but wish to protect their eyesight from “blue light”.

But do we really know what it is and its effects?

Blue light refers to the blue wavelengths of the light perceived by the human eye. Naturally, it is present and beneficial during daylight hours. Being a melatonin suppressant, it helps the body’s attention, reaction time and moods. It engages our body’s natural cycle by helping it stay awake and alert. Therefore, “blue light” in itself is natural and necessary, but the artificial blue light that our electronic devices emit can be harmful.

Many studies have shown that the use of devices before bedtime disrupts the sleep cycle and can have an impact on performance, health and safety. A 2014 study found a direct correlation between the melatonin level present in the blood (lower) and the time it took to fall asleep (longer), comparing it with the levels and time of individuals who read a regular book.

It is safe to say that even if companies are banking on their clients’ fear of “blue light”, this new wellness craze is actually well-founded, as many studies were able to find a direct link between blue light and negative effects. Harvard Health Publishing recommends starting avoiding screens two to three hours before bedtime and to wear blue-light blocking glasses (especially at night).

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