More than 90 percent of adults say they spend, on average, nearly eight hours a day looking at their smart device. Optometrists say there are several factors that make this dangerous. The proximity of the device, the type of backlight, the frequency of use, and the duration without pausing could be an eye hazard because the blue color of screens can contribute to the long-term damage of the retina. When it comes to smart devices, doctors are questioning just how much blue light you’re taking in every day and when it’s time to shut it off.
Whether PC, mobile phone or tablet – we spend about eight hours a day in front of one or another screen, contenting moving between one of them. The LED diodes in these devices usually emit a blue light that is invisible to the human eye. This is very stressful especially for the retina. Doctors say with so many screens, the color temperature moves in a spectrum that can be very damaging to the eyes.
Even LED lamps that sit on the desk usually appear in this color spectrum and especially in winter, when it gets dark early, becomes an additional eye burden.
Blue Light Boosts Risk of Vision Impairment
Even with small screens, the blue light exposure can be very high, and consumers use the phone more often during the day than realized. Even before going to bed, one last look at a smart device has become a matter of course. Doctors say especially the late-night use has particularly strong effects on us and our eyes, because the increase in blue-violet light, among other things, increases the risk of macular degeneration, a degenerative visual impairment.
According to The American Macular Degeneration Foundation, direct exposure to blue LED light can cause damage to the retina, leading to the loss of central vision, i.e., the ability to see what is in front of us.
Not Just Sight Is Compromised
Exposure to blue light at night can ruin the quality of sleep. That brilliant blue light interrupts the production of melatonin in the brain. This is a hormone that assists in managing our sleep patterns. Our brains are wired to begin the production of melatonin when we go to sleep, and the light disrupts this sleep process.
When melatonin levels are altered, the risk of a wide range of disorders increases, from depression to chronic disease. Sleep disorders due to blue light have also been linked to cancer risk, particularly breast and prostate cancers. In addition to helping you sleep, melatonin also works as an antioxidant, and antioxidants are important in cancer prevention.
But is blue light completely harmful? Doctors say no, however, they recommend regular screen breaks in which the retina can regenerate again. In addition, a blue light filter in the lens can help refine the dangerous hues and protect the eyes. Manufacturers offer such lenses, and computer manufacturers of monitors and LED lights have already recognized the problem and are creating new models that filter out the harmful color spectrum.