It is hard to escape technology, isn’t it? While it is true that technology has made it a lot easier for us to save our time and energy, it also has a dark side.
Our smartphones and gadgets are a mode of entertainment for us. Even when we have a spare minute, we scroll social media or watch a YouTube video because we can do it now. But, this digital has created as many problems as it has solved.
Firstly, people are getting addicted to their devices. Smartphones have become a family member who gets space at the dinner table and kids are spending more time on social media than studying.
While digital addiction is one thing, there is another big problem we all are facing in this highly digital world – poor eye health. Staring at digital screens all through the day is not a treat for your eyes. If you also wonder why your eyes hurt after screen time, read this blog to know better.
Blue light is one of the most dangerous lights out there. We get it from both natural and artificial sources. It is defined as having high energy rays and travelling in short wavelengths.
The biggest source of blue light is the sun. Spending time in the sun exposes our eyes to a high volume of blue light. But, since it is natural, it has some good effects on our body. For instance, spending time in the sun improves our cognitive functions and boosts alertness. It makes sure that our body is awake so we can perform our daily tasks perfectly.
However, artificial sources of blue light such as your digital devices and the LED bulbs at your home or office are extremely dangerous to your eyes. Even if you wear single vision or multifocal glasses, they are not capable of protecting your eyes from screen harm.
Blue waves are short and your screens are loaded with these waves. This light decreases the visual contrast on your screen so your eyes have to push beyond their limit to read the words on the screen. If you indulge in as much as 5 or 6 hours of screen time, you should get your eyes checked.
Eye problems are subtle and don’t show up until they turn severe. It is best to have an eye test to assess the amount of damage your screens have done to your eyes.
Blue light is not desirable for your retina. It weakens the delicate photoreceptor cells on your retinal wall and causes night blindness where you have almost zero visual performance in low light conditions.
Also, blue light triggers the release of toxic chemicals in the tissues of your macula (the part of your eye that gives you central vision). In this case, long term exposure to blue light leads to the early development of macular degeneration.
Blue light hinders the functioning of your eyes by reducing the screen contrast. When your eyes have to overwork, they get tired too soon and start to hurt. This problem is known as digital eye strain and is also accompanied by symptoms such as blurry vision or headaches.
Even when you are playing motion games, the constant movement of images puts extra pressure on your delicate eye muscles and they start to hurt quite soon.
The best way is to use blue light glasses that are solely created for reducing the screen time effects on your eyes.
Blue light blocking glasses have advanced lenses that are meant to absorb the harmful blue waves. These glasses prevent the blue light from reaching your eyes.
Many people who use blue light glasses report less to no symptoms of eye strain. It is also the best way to protect your eyes from vision disorders such as macular degeneration or cataracts.
Apart from wearing protective eyewear, here are the steps you can take to avoid digital harm.
- Spend less time on digital devices.
- Don’t use devices for prolonged hours. Take small breaks in between to give your eyes some rest.
- Use blue light filters for your computer or laptop.
- Increase the screen contrast.
- Make sure your posture is straight and comfortable when you are sitting in front of a screen.
- Have proper sleep so your eyes can heal and function normally.
- Blink often so you don’t develop dry eyes.
- Eat foods that are good for your macular health.
Even when you are buying a pair of non-prescription, make sure it has a blue light coating to shield your eyes from blue light.