“Blue light is a double-edged sword,” says David Blask, M.D., associate director of the Tulane University Center for Circadian Biology. But too much blue light exposure at night has the same effect, “disrupting your circadian system and suppressing your melatonin production, which can lead to serious sleep problems.” So limit (or forgo) screen time in the hour or two before bed. LED monitors use blue light, so this affects avid computer users, television watchers, and anyone who spends a lot of time using a phone. Comments: 0. Blue light, at high enough doses, is therefore more likely to cause damage when absorbed by various cells in our body. Research indicates children need blue light to develop eyes and vision. Retina damage – Over time blue light exposure damages retinal cells. Many smartphones will do this automatically (if you have an Apple device, try the Night Shift setting). You may not be able to avoid blue light, but there are steps you can take to protect your eyes and your vision. Now I'm having eye problems. And position the screen so you are looking slightly downward. May 17, 2019 -- The blue light in LED lighting used in many consumer products may harm your sleep and pose a risk to your eyes, a new report warns.. Sleep is essential for optimal health — including eye health. Boost Your Macular Pigment. PhotoAlto/Frederic Cirou/PhotoAlto Agency RF Collections/Getty Images. Fluorescent light or CFL (compact fluorescent light) bulbs, Consider blue light filters for your smartphone, illuminated e-reader, or tablet, Talk with your eye doctor about Intraocular lens. There is one way that blue light can be a problem: It interferes with our ability to get a good night's sleep. Vegetarian sources include walnuts and chia seeds. Blue light is an unavoidable part of modern life, but does blue light damage eyes? “Our lenses get thicker, and the protein structure of the lenses changes, both of which increase blue light scatter,” says Figueiro, who compares it with watching a movie in a theater with the lights on. Blue light is healthy to a certain point. Javascript must be enabled to use this site. Supplements offer an opportunity to ensure you feed your eyes these protective nutrients. Adjust screen display settings: “Ensure that the brightness of the screen that you're viewing is matched as closely as possible to the brightness of your surroundings,” Citek says. “So they think there's some damage going on. again. Humans convert beta-carotene into vitamin A. Please return to AARP.org to learn more about other benefits. For example, when you were a child did anyone ever tell you that carrots are good for your eyes? En español | Checking emails on your smartphone. | Blue light impacts eye health in a few ways leading to eyestrain and premature eye damage. Devouring the latest best seller on your e-reader. With AARP membership, there’s always more to discover. All this extra exposure adds up over the days, weeks, and years. “The amount of blue light emitted by your smartphone, tablet, computer screen or similar device is nowhere close to the intensity necessary to cause retinal damage,” Citek explains. You'll start receiving the latest news, benefits, events, and programs related to AARP's mission to empower people to choose how they live as they age. The sale offers 3 Packs for $90. Indeed, a quick scan of the web pulls up unsettling reports that the blue light from screens can cause several scary eye conditions — even blindness. Members can take a free confidential hearing test by phone. In the meantime, please feel free Many people take omega-3 supplements to ensure they consume enough since the human body cannot produce its own essential fatty acids. Each color affects our eyes a little differently. www.aarp.org/volunteer. Carrots are rich in beta-carotene, a form of vitamin A. Carotenoids (including beta-carotene) help plants absorb the light needed for photosynthesis. Members save on eye exams and eyewear at participating locations. Members save up to 10% on premiums when enrolling online. Website Design by, Blue light impacts eye health in a few ways leading to eyestrain and premature eye damage, develop eye-friendly habits and to protect your vision, anyone who spends a lot of time using a phone, People often stare at their computer or device screen sometimes without resting the eyes or even without blinking, This contributes to or causes vision problems including age-related macular degeneration, People may choose to wear sunglasses to protect their eyes from the sun, You may not be able to avoid blue light, but there are steps you can take to protect your eyes and your vision, Your diet and nutrition support your eye health, the macular pigment that helps shield your eyes from blue light, Be sure to see your eye doctor for your regular exams and for guidance on the best ways to protect your vision, What to Do When You Have Dry Eye Syndrome, 5 Things You Can Do to Prevent Eye Injuries Due to Falls. The reality is, they're experiencing eyestrain.”. related to AARP volunteering. If you're holding a smartphone or e-reader and have to cup your hand over the screen to read the words, adjust the device's contrast or brightness levels. Both natural sunlight and artificial light penetrate deeply into our eyes. A comprehensive plan including professional eye care, a healthy diet, and eye-friendly lifestyle offers the best protection for your vision. So just how concerned should we be? Some say it's bad for the eyes. Benefits of blue light include: A healthy balance of blue light benefits the human body and mind. “I saw one blog post which read ‘My computer is making me blind!’ No it's not. Others complain of a dull, aching pain behind their eyes. According to the Vision Council, about 80 percent of adults report using digital devices for more than two hours a day and 59 percent experience symptoms of digital eyestrain. green or red light. Another nutrient that benefits the eyes is omega-3 fatty acids including EPA and DHA. laptop computers has raised concerns about the effects it may have on the sleep-wake cycle and possible damage to the eyes If you're viewing your screen in a darkened room at night, turn down its brightness. When you ask yourself, “does blue light damage eyes,” there is more to just your eyesight to take into consideration. to search for ways to make a difference in your community at The human body uses these essential fats to create and maintain the function of cells, nerves, muscles, and organs. Also, consider using lubricating eye drops. But does blue light image eyes? These fatty acids are the building blocks for fats your body needs. For more information visit Piedmont Eye Care’s supplement page. On the other hand, blue light has shorter wavelengths and more energy. This can lead to dry eyes that feel itchy and uncomfortable. You are leaving AARP.org and going to the website of our trusted provider. (Tip: If the screen you're reading from now looks like a light source, it's too bright.) Unfortunately, many people do not get enough of these nutrients in a typical diet. Piedmont Eye Care is currently running a special on EyePromise Zeaxanthin + Lutein Macular Health supplements. Retina damage – Over time blue light exposure damages retinal cells.This contributes to or causes vision problems including age-related macular degeneration. Your diet and nutrition support your eye health. However, the digital age increases blue light exposure. It may lead to premature aging of the eyes in some ways similar how UV rays can lead to premature skin aging. Do you need 'computer' glasses for tired eyes? And in May the French Agency for Food, Environmental and Occupational Health & Safety published a study suggesting that continued exposure to blue light can “accelerate the aging of retinal tissue” and increase the risk of age-related macular degeneration . Many of us spend hours a day looking at our devices’ screens, which emit blue light: the high-energy, short–wavelength light that's also emitted by the sun. AARP is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that empowers people to choose how they live as they age. Keep your distance: Holding electronic devices too close to your face — which most of us do — can cause eyestrain. But the symptoms don't end there. Are you interested in finding out does blue light damage eyes? Most blue light passes through the eye’s lens and cornea until it reaches the retina. Employ the 20-20-20 rule: To reduce the risk of tired eyes by constantly focusing on your screen, look away from your computer at least every 20 minutes and gaze at an object at least 20 feet away for a minimum of 20 seconds. When you ask yourself, “does blue light damage eyes,” there is more to just your eyesight to take into consideration. Blue light is credited with boosting alertness, lifting moods, and it may even help memory. by Barbara Stepko, AARP, July 30, 2019 Both natural sunlight and artificial light penetrate deeply into our eyes. All Rights Reserved. Blue light is everywhere since the sun is the largest source. The term “essential” refers to nutrients we need but are not able to produce, so we need to consume them through diet or supplementation. Common dietary sources include oily fish like salmon and mackerel. In addition to eye damage, evidence suggests that modern levels of blue light exposure may disrupt natural sleeping and waking cycles. Browse your member benefits. During the day, when the sun is out, it stimulates us. Indeed, a quick scan of the web pulls up unsettling reports that the blue light from screens can cause several scary eye conditions — even blindness. The following guide is strictly for educational purposes and is not a substitute for medical and professional care. Keep your computer screen about 25 inches from your eyes. I'm exposed to all this blue light. “Hold handheld devices at normal reading distance, which for most people is about an arm's length away,” Citek recommends. A French health authority warned of the dangers of blue light, stating this wavelength can damage the eye's retina while also disturbing our biological and sleep rhythms. … Some studies hint that lack of blue light exposure might result in nearsightedness among children. Be sure to see your eye doctor for your regular exams and for guidance on the best ways to protect your vision. Banish glare: When light strikes your laptop's screen, you can get an annoying reflection. “The light is so bright that we'll squint or look away, so we don't look at that source long enough for it to be harmful.”, Part of the reason for concern about tech devices is that people start to notice eye discomfort and fatigue after staring at screens for a long time, says Rahul Khurana, an ophthalmologist and vitreoretinal surgeon in Northern California and spokesperson for the American Academy of Ophthalmology. Indeed, studies show that we blink about 15 times a minute, but only half to a third as often when we use computers and other digital devices. For example, red light has longer wavelengths and less energy. Blue light is an unavoidable part of modern life, but does blue light damage eyes? It also acts as an antioxidant that helps protect us from oxidative damage. The provider’s terms, conditions and policies apply. It's potentially so remote.”, Citek notes that the blue light from the sun is far more potent than what's emitted by tech devices, adding, “under normal viewing conditions, people have not gone blind from being outside. Oh, my God! In addition to eye damage, evidence suggests that modern levels of blue light exposure may disrupt natural sleeping and waking cycles. The primary blue-light absorbing tissue in the eye is the macular pigment. The truth is, you can have too much of a good thing. People may choose to wear sunglasses to protect their eyes from the sun, but how likely are they to protect their eyes from their computer monitor, television, or mobile device? Educating yourself about blue light offers the opportunity to develop eye-friendly habits and to protect your vision. This becomes an even bigger issue as we age. It is the thin layer of yellow tissue that sits in the very center of the eye, called the macula. Not very, says Karl Citek, a professor of optometry at Oregon's Pacific University College of Optometry and a member of the American Optometric Association Commission on Ophthalmic Standards. Beta-carotene is not the only carotenoid that assists with eye health. receive communications related to AARP volunteering. And in May the French Agency for Food, Environmental and Occupational Health & Safety published a study suggesting that continued exposure to blue light can “accelerate the aging of retinal tissue” and increase the risk of age-related macular degeneration. “This allows your eyes to re-nourish the ocular surface with tears, which usually helps with digital eyestrain,” Khurana explains. Digital eye strain – LED monitors are a common form of blue light exposure. Well, they were right. Blink frequently: When you're in front of a screen for a long stretch, combat dry eyes by blinking slowly every so often. AARP members receive exclusive member benefits & affect social change. The sun’s light contains a mixture of red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo and violet light. Here are 6 ways to protect yourself against blue light eye damage: 1. Colorful orange or yellow produce like carrots, squash, cantaloupe, and red or yellow peppers provide helpful nutrients like carotenoids. It regulates circadian rhythm or our body’s natural sleeping and waking cycle clock. What's more, “Typically, we have a natural aversion to that,” Figueiro observes. “When you concentrate on looking at something, your blink reflex goes down,” says Khurana. Lutein and zeaxanthin are carotenoids your eyes use to create the macular pigment that helps shield your eyes from blue light. Blue light naturally comes from sunlight. You can also manage your communication preferences by updating your account at anytime. Many people also end up with blurry vision, and some try to compensate by leaning forward or, if they're wearing bifocals, dropping their chin to look through the bottom portion of their glasses — resulting in a sore neck, shoulders and back. /wp-content/uploads/2017/02/piedmont-eye-care-logo.png, https://www.charlotteoptometry.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/04/does-blue-light-damage-eyes.jpg, © 2020 Piedmont EyeCare Associates. Visit AARP’s Eye Center for information on your vision health and ways to protect your eyes. Watching a movie on your tablet. Blue light is of concern because it has more energy per photon of light than other colors in the visible spectrum, i.e. Please enable Javascript in your browser and try ", Super-intense sources of blue light, such as tactical flashlights and some powerful LED car headlights, can be harmful, says Mariana Figueiro, director of the Lighting Research Center at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, New York, but you would have to look directly into the light for a long period to cause damage. In the next 24 hours, you will receive an email to confirm your subscription to receive emails

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