In today’s society, it is not unusual for men and women to spend hours a day staring at a computer, television screen, smartphone, or tablet device. Each time you use these electronics, you are exposing yourself to blue light. Because of this continued use each and every day, people believe that blue light exposure is bad for their eyesight. However, there currently has been no supporting evidence that blue light exposure from digital devices is causing you to go blind or is negatively impacting your vision’s health.
What about discomfort?
Some patients believe that the discomfort they experience from viewing on these devices is caused by blue light. This is not the case. In fact, this discomfort is commonly known as “digital eye strain.” In most situations, patients who use these screen devices do not blink as often as they would otherwise, which causes dry eyes and increased eye strain.
How much blue light exposure am I experiencing?
We often think of blue light exposure strictly in terms of the electronics we use each and every day. However, the largest source of blue light in our lives is sunlight. In addition, LED lights, compact fluorescent light bulbs, and fluorescent lighting found in most office spaces also contribute to our blue light exposure. The exposure from the sun and office lights is often more blue light exposure than the screens alone we use in our day-to-day activities.
What is the harm of blue light exposure?
We know more about ultraviolet light from the sun than we do with blue light. Research is still being performed to determine the damage blue light has to us. Ultraviolet light is known for causing not only cataracts, eye growths, and increased risk of eye diseases, but skin cancer and sun damage. Blue light has no known consequences at this point in time.
Regardless, it is important overall to reduce blue light use, especially in the evenings, as it can impact your circadian rhythm and make it more difficult to get a good night’s sleep. Also, patients who work on computers or use screens regularly should always take breaks, use artificial tears to address dry eye, and reduce their risk of digital eye strain when possible.
Schedule an appointment with Dr. David Aizuss today
Patients of Encino and West Hills, California seeking an eye care provider are encouraged to speak to their doctor about the risk of blue light exposure and eye health. Call today to request a visit and learn more!