Taking a Closer Look at a Popular Wellness Trend
Perhaps you have seen a friend or a celebrity on social media share a photo of themselves wearing a stylish pair of glasses called blue light glasses. These glasses are manufactured by popular eyeglass retailers with special frames said to block the blue light emitted from device screens. The glasses, according to retailers, claim to absorb the blue light from our devices and, in doing so, reduce glare that causes eye strain as well as protect against eye disease.
Do blue light glasses really work, or are they nothing more than a fun eyewear accessory? Before you order a pair of your own, let’s take a closer look at this topic.
Can Blue Light From My Phone Lead to Eye Disease?
You may hear some concern in the ophthalmology community regarding blue light because it is the closest to invisible, ultraviolet (UV) light on the color spectrum. As you know, without adequate sun protection, UV light rays can burn your skin. UV rays can also burn your eyes, and that is the type of UV light exposure that can potentially lead to eye disease.
However, the small amount of blue light emitted from our devices is different from UV light, and according to the American Academy of Ophthalmology, blue light specifically coming from device screens has never been proven to cause any harm to our eyes.
Does Blue Light Cause Eye Strain?
The eye strain that we experience when we spend a lot of time looking at a screen is not due to blue light. It actually has to do with blinking. When you blink, your eyes are lubricated and protected against dust, light, and other potential irritants. Because we blink less than the average 15 times per minute when staring at a screen, our eyes can more easily become strained. We all experience eye strain differently, but it could result in dry eyes, watery or tearing eyes, a headache, or even blurry vision.
Do Blue Light Glasses Prevent Eye Strain?
Specialized eyewear like blue-light-blocking glasses may help reduce the glare from your computer screen. If you have been wearing blue light glasses after your LASIK procedure and find them to make a difference, there is no reason to discontinue wearing them. However, the only thing that will truly prevent eye strain is giving your eyes a break. We recommend being mindful of how long you have been staring at your device. Take breaks at least every 20 minutes and focus your eyes on an object at least 20 feet away for at least 20 seconds. Remember to blink!
Are you experiencing frequent eye strain when working at a computer or using a device? Make sure you discuss your symptoms with your optometrist or a health professional to be certain there are no underlying issues or concerns. Your LVC team is here if you have any questions.