Do you use a monitor, smartphone, or television? Obviously, you do – you’re reading this.
If you’re like me, then you probably use one of these devices close to 12 hours a day. People always say to limit screen time, but how can we in this day and age, especially if your job calls for it? The average American spends right around 11 hours a day looking at a screen. A good amount of that is due to work and the rest is typically entertainment or communication with friends and family. All of this is just to say we, as a culture, spend a lot of time with eyes glued to screens.
Does this screen-centric lifestyle cause harm?
I have gotten headaches for a while and I always attributed them to allergies, but I am a graphic designer. I spend lots of time on my computer working in Photoshop and similar design software starting at my screen, sometimes focusing down to specific pixels. And research says that too much screen time can have a negative effect. But in a world that revolves around screens, it’s hard to cut back. So what can you do?
Blue light glasses reduce the effects of too much screen time
Have you ever heard of blue light glasses? I hadn’t either until a friend of mine recently got them. She is a college student on track to start med school, so she spends a ton of hours at the library on her Macbook reading, writing papers, and probably looking up the occasional cat video (we’re all guilty of it).
She had noticed that she got headaches fairly regularly and had trouble sleeping at night, but she attributed this to stress about school. After she saw an ad on Pinterest for blue light glasses that promised relief, she decided to give them a try.
When I asked about them, she explained to me that prolonged blue light emitted from electronic devices affects people because of light triggered hormones in your body that tell you to wake up when the sun is up and reduce melatonin production, which is made to lull us to sleep at night.
Blue light, specifically, affects people in this way because it has the highest wavelength of the visible light spectrum. Because the wavelength is so high, it tends to strain your eyes the longer you spend looking at a screen, which often results in headaches and occasionally a migraine. There is also research that is suggesting that long exposure to blue light can permanently damage your eyes.
At first, I was skeptical of the magic blue light blocking, headache-preventing, send you off to sleep glasses, but I was willing to try anything to cure my daily headaches. So I thought I would give the magic glasses a try.
The verdict on blue light glasses
I didn’t want to spend a ton of money on these glasses because I wasn’t even sure they would work, so I went to the one place I knew I could get stuff for cheap with lots of reviews on the product: Amazon. I ordered blue light glasses that received high reviews from customers and they were only about $20. After wearing them for a few weeks, I am very impressed with how well they work.
I no longer get headaches like I used to and I can still spend hours at a time on my Macbook fretting about small little pixels. I never wore glasses before so it took some time getting used to wearing them for the majority of my day, but the glasses I got are light and comfortable and I am now drinking the blue light glasses Kool-Aid and loving it.