Even if you're pretty good at keeping your screen time to a minimum, with one quick glance at Instagram every day, half-hour gaming or just plain office workers … Average one still spends around 1,700 hours a year in front of a computer screen. And that is enough time for your eyes to go crazy!
What do you think if there is a magic coating on your glasses, it can reduce eye strain and actually help you sleep better. That's quite exactly what will bring with this kind of blue light shield.
In recent years, blue light shields have become so popular that New York City-based eyewear company Warby Parker has started offering the option of adding coating to nearly all types of glasses. themselves after customer needs culminated. The company offers it through an online shopping portal, which allows customers to easily customize and order prescription lenses and frames for an additional $ 50 fee on the final cost if you want to add extra filter. green light.
This so-called "computer glass" has come a long way from the awful orange lenses common previously. Now there are enough manufacturers to offer blue light shielding that you can choose, with pretty much any style you like.
Although there is no scientific consensus about whether blue light blocking glasses prevent eye strain, experts are increasingly recommending them to patients. But we did some of our own testing to see if the blue light filter lens was commensurate with its hype.
How to check
I have been wearing blue light shields (Warby Parker) since the first week of October and, so to speak, during that six-week period, the number of headaches I have experienced has decreased to almost equal. No, everything else is the same.
During the test, I wore glasses from 8 am to 10 pm. As a journalist, I often sit at my computer, write, edit and research the news. Meanwhile, my MacBook is set to the highest brightness level to help compensate for my poor vision, which often results in dry, tired eyes after 3:00 pm.
I also recorded how many hours a day I log in the phone screen for a week before I try on the blue light shield, and note if I have a headache or eye strain. Before and during testing, I also turned off the blue light filter on my phone. That way, I can be sure that any effect that is caused by the glass, not the screen filter.
What is blue light shield
Blue light screens are exactly what their names suggest: eliminate the blue light that your eyes are exposed to every day, especially on computers or on phones.
Although the name is light blue glass, it is actually more orange-yellow.
When you place the glass on a white surface, it may look a bit orange, but it is not noticeable if you do not try to notice. Blue light screens sometimes produce warm, sunny colors for everything you see, although manufacturers and designers have greatly improved the effect of this effect. The Warby Parker lenses I tested still have a slight yellow effect, but as soon as you stop thinking about it, you won't notice it.
Exactly not a lot of data is available about blue light lenses and if they live up to their promise, there is still no clear consensus about whether blue light is harmful to the eyes.
A 2015 study published in the Journal of Adolescent Health found that, compared to conventional clear lenses, blue light blocking glasses "significantly reduced melatonin inhibition due to LED lights in the evening and reduced vigilant attention, subjective alertness before bed "in minors.
Adam Gordon, OD, associate clinical professor at the University of Alabama at Birmingham Optics University, says that overexposure to blue light can lead to eye strain and reduced focus, but will not lead. to permanent retinal damage.
"Lens manufacturers have jumped in and are creating products that they claim will protect your eyes from macular degeneration or other eye diseases," he told the school's public relations office. University. "Blue light is often more annoying to the eye than physical harm. It's important to understand what blue light is, where the allegations of danger and threat of blue light come from and where it comes from. really affect your vision. "
According to a study of existing studies on blue light shielding, published in the journal Ophthalmic & Physiological Optics, the results show no direct evidence that the use of blue light blocking glass will improve. improve any quality of your health.
However, there is a study of the negative effects of blue light on the body, especially regarding the production of melatonin, a hormone that regulates the body's sleep and wake cycles.
Harvard Medical School notes that blue wavelengths are useful during the day because they increase attention, reaction time and mood but cause disturbances at night. Not only do electronics emit blue light, but so do energy-saving LED light bulbs (you may notice that these devices often emit brighter white light than warm, yellow light). .
While the sun emits blue light that helps regulate our circadian rhythms, keeps us awake during the day, artificial light sources can be turned on at any time of the day (including daytime). night) and potentially disrupting our normal sleep schedule.
In one experiment, Harvard researchers tested subjects exposed to green light for 6.5 hours and then blue light for the same time period. The results showed that blue light prevented the production of melatonin for twice as long as green light and doubled the circadian rhythm.
During the Warby Park green light test, I averaged an increase of nearly an hour to sleep each night. Some nights, I was sleepy before 9:30 pm, which is not what usually happened before. Of course, there are also some nights I stay up later, but the average of the total over six weeks shows an improvement in my bedtime. The average time I go to bed before I wear glasses is nearly 11:00 PM. I also find it easier to pass the work day without eye drops, as I sometimes do.
Overall, I felt that the quality of my sleep was the same, but my ability to sleep improved. Also, I didn't notice any really intense results. It's also possible that my sleep was affected by the placebo effect, but anyway, I still prefer to sleep.
Despite the lack of clinical evidence, I recommend using a blue light for people who have trouble sleeping, especially if you use electronic devices like phones, TVs or computers often before you go. to sleep.