What are the effects of blue light on our sleep?

blue light

Have you ever wondered what your digital devices do to your health? Our eyes are bombarded with natural and artificial lights. One light that comes from both natural and artificial sources and is both good and bad for our health is blue light.

We stare at computers or laptops at work all day. Then we come home and either watch television or get busy in our smartphones. Then we lay in bed and scroll our social media or watch YouTube. And after that, we face trouble sleeping.

Why does that happen? Does our screen time have anything to do with our sleep loss? And can it be resolved by wearing protective glasses? Let’s talk about it in great detail.

What is blue light?

Not every light has the same effect on our health. But, blue light is one such light that has both good and bad effects. While exposure to the blue wavelengths in the sun during the daytime boost alertness, reaction times and our cognitive functions, they can be disruptive during the night time. 

Blue light has short wavelengths and thus its rays are intense and unfocused. This is why your eyes feel tired after a long session of screen time. Blue light is scattered all over your digital screens and your eyes have to focus much harder to see the letters on your screen clearly. The good news is that there are affordable glasses available that block blue light like nothing else. 

Blue light and sleep

Our electronics and digital devices are the most common sources of artificial blue light along with LED bulbs. When we indulge in excessive screen time in the night, the blue wavelengths inhibit the production of melatonin or sleep-inducing hormone. As a result, our natural internal clock gets disrupted and we find it difficult to sleep.

Also, our brain helps in analysing the external light environment and signaling our body to either be alert or go to sleep. When we stare at your smartphone or laptop long past the sun sets, our brain mistakes the blue light for sunlight and we feel more alert.

If you have been struggling with the irregular sleep patterns, you might want to put your phone away at night and get under those sheets. 

What else does blue light do?

Apart from disrupting our sleep/wake cycle, blue light is the main culprit behind the unpleasant symptoms we feel after a long day at work mainly known as digital eye strain. Working for long hours on our digital screens makes our eyes work harder. The eye muscles wear out in the process leaving you with eye pain and fatigue.

Also, when we look at screens, we blink less which causes a shortage of lubrication on our eyes. This situation can quickly take the form of dry eyes where your eyes won’t be able to produce enough tears to maintain the adequate level of moisture.

One way to avoid this bad light is to use blue light blocking glasses. Whether you are working on a digital device or spending digital time at night, you won’t have to put up with digital eye strain or sleep loss if you are wearing these glasses.

When you buy good quality blue-light glasses, you can filter out this light by 99%. This means that you will have a clear screen view even with your glasses on.

How to avoid blue light at night?

Here are a couple of useful tips to lessen the effect of blue light exposure on your eyes and sleep:

  • Use night lights or dim red lights instead of LED bulbs in the night time.
  • Put away your digital devices at least 2 hours before you hit the bed.
  • If you are working on a night shift, don’t forget to wear blue light glasses. Make sure your glasses have anti-reflective coating on their lenses. 
  • Expose your eyes to various kinds of lights during the day.
  • If you are above 40, you are at a higher risk of developing cataracts or age-related macular degeneration due to blue light exposure. Make sure your reading glasses are able to filter out this bad light. You can also get reading glasses online with blue light blocking technology on their lenses.

Blue light is one of the major causes behind abnormal sleep patterns in adults and kids as well. A minimum of 8 hours of sleep is crucial for our well-being. Don’t let blue light get in the way. Eliminate this problem with blue light glasses.

 

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