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Do Blue Light Glasses Work?
2022-01-20

A lot of us were sent to work from our laptops in the comfort of our homes and swap our date nights and book clubs with Netflix and … well, more Netflix. Screen time skyrocketed. The average American spends 11 hours a day looking at digital screens, and we don’t see this trending down any time soon. 

 Stare at a screen long enough and you just might find yourself rubbing dry eyes, wishing away a headache, and even tossing and turning at night. This is in part because of the high-energy visible light (HEV) that comes from digital screens, commonly referred to as “harmful blue light.” Oh yeah, she’s a doozy, alright. Her intense and short wavelengths hit our eyes at a higher frequency and blast right into our eyeballs all day. One solution?

 Blue light blocking glasses are made with a lens that has an anti-reflective coating that blocks, you guessed it, blue light. More specifically, they block artificial blue light. The lenses remove blue light frequencies from the visible light spectrum, meaning less HEV hits your eyes and stops the need to rub, wish, toss, and even turn. We guess you could consider them spam blockers for your eyes. But for all the greatness that blue light blocking does, some people question the point of blue light blocking lenses altogether. 

blue light glasses eyebobs computer classes


Let’s talk numbers. Remember that HEV mumbo-jumbo? It’s important to note that blue light wavelengths range from about 400-500 nanometers. High-energy light like this, including violet and blue-violet rays, sit on the end of the spectrum closer to invisible, ultraviolet rays that have been linked to UV radiation and skin and eye damage. And the truth is, we just don’t know enough about the effects of artificial light at these frequencies to rule them out as a-okay.

So, do blue light glasses work? Here’s an important factor that’s often left out of the discussion when talking about blue light: both natural and artificial blue light exist. Natural blue light, the blue light that comes from the sun, can be good for things like memory, and the production of melatonin, the body’s natural sleep aid. Artificial blue light is the blue light we‘ve just discussed (the wavelengths that come from digital screens). While the world continues to learn and conduct research about the long-term side effects of artificial blue light, blue light blocking lenses were created to combat potential side effects from something that wasn’t meant for our eyes based on what we know about high-energy visible waves. 

To help explain the positives of blue light protection, we did a Q&A with our Optical Lab Manager, Samantha Schuller.

 

blue light computer glasses for work


Q:  What are blue light glasses?

A: “Think of Blue Light lenses as a sunscreen for your eyes (your digital screen acting as the sun)! These lenses protect you from the artificial blue light emitted from digital screens. Plus, eyebobs blue light lenses are also scratch-resistant, easy-to-clean, and anti-reflective! You can get almost any pair of eyebobs with blue light lenses. That’s hundreds of options!”

 

Q: Is blue light bad for you?

A: “Which one, artificial or natural?  Natural blue light is like most things in nature … necessary and good for you!  Artificial blue light, like most processed foods, for example, is not natural and most likely not good for you.  The truth is, artificial blue light is something fairly new and is still being studied.  Are there studies that show reduced eyestrain, fatigue, and headaches from using these products? Yes! Could those be from the anti-reflective coating? Yes! From the Blue light filter? Yes? From both? Perhaps! But, wouldn't you rather be on the side of protecting your eyes just in case?”

 

Q: Should my teens be wearing blue light lenses?

A: “Kids nowadays are dependent on screens; it’s become a part of our everyday life! While their eyes are still developing, it’s important to give them all the protection necessary for healthy growth. The truth is, artificial blue light hasn't been around long enough for us to know the extent of the long-term damages.  But, just like you wouldn't feed your kids a diet of totally artificial foods for their growing bodies, wouldn't you want to protect their growing eyes?  And let's say we find out that artificial blue light isn't as bad as we thought. Great! You are still getting the benefits of an optical-quality, scratch-resistant lens with an anti-reflective coating and is ultra-easy to clean!”

 

Q: How do blue light lenses help me sleep better? 

A: “Nerd alert! Natural blue light, produced from the sun, gets filtered through our eyes into the pineal gland, which then produces a steady stream of melatonin that gets stored in our bodies and helps us fall into a restful sleep.  What does that mean?  Well, it’s possible that extended exposure to artificial blue light confuses our bodies, where our eyes feel tired but we just can’t seem to turn off our brains.  Blue light lenses help filter out these potentially harmful, artificial light rays, making our eyes and brains both know that when our heads hit that pillow, it’s off to dreamland.”

 We don’t want to leave your eyeballs to the mercy of the blue-lit “interwebs.” Our blue light lenses block HEV light ranging from 415 to 455 nanometers in addition to having full, 400UV protection. Couple this with optical-quality, scratch-resistant, easy-to-clean, anti-reflective lenses, and we’re giving you the ultimate weapon in the battle against being online all the time (aka, the best blue light blocking glasses ever).


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