If you find yourself looking at artificial screens all day long, you may want to consider a pair of blue light glasses. But what are they, and what should you know about them before you spend potentially hundreds of dollars on a top-quality pair?
Blue light glasses are glasses designed to significantly reduce your eyes’ exposure to blue light from their sources, which can include:
- Cell phones
- Computer screens
- The sun
Too much exposure to blue light has been proven to result in an increased risk of macular degeneration, which is a condition of the retina that results in impaired or lost vision. To maintain healthy eyes, you should consider using blue light glasses many times a day, especially when using digital devices or venturing into the outdoors. Read on to learn more about it/
What Are Blue Light Glasses?
You know that blue light glasses are a helpful tool for people using technology that emits blue light often, but what exactly are they? What do they do and how do they work? Let’s go into more detail on these questions below.
What Blue Light Glasses Do
As previously mentioned, blue light glasses are like regular glasses, but they’re specifically designed to minimize your eyes’ exposure to blue light.
The blue light coating on these glasses reflects blue light away from your eyes, so it does not pass through the lenses. They work similarly to a mirror reflecting light, but only with blue light.
Blue light can come from digital screens, some light bulbs, and the sun. By reducing the amount of blue light your eyes are exposed to, blue light glasses can result in healthier retinas in the long run.
How Blue Light Glasses Work
Blue light glasses are just like regular glasses, but they have special lenses on them.
These lenses have a coating on them that is capable of preventing blue light from passing through. Depending on the type you get, these glasses can also block glare to prevent further eye strain.
If you already wear prescription glasses, you may be able to add this blue light-blocking coating to your next new pair. If you wear contacts or do not use any corrective eyewear, you can get false lenses that only block out blue light without affecting your vision.
Why You Need Blue Light Glasses
There are a few different reasons why you may need blue light glasses.
Ultimately, blue light can potentially be harmful in the long term. Extensive exposure to blue light can result in:
- Impaired vision
- Loss of vision
- Eye strain
By using blue light glasses, you can potentially reduce your exposure to blue light and prevent these uncomfortable symptoms. However, it is important to note that more research needs to be done on blue light. While some general studies have pointed to blue light as a danger, others have suggested it is not as harmful as once thought.
In the meantime, using blue light glasses is for the best until more results are made public. After all, it’s better to be safe than sorry.
When Should I Use Blue Light Glasses?
There are three main times when you should be wearing blue light glasses.
These locations are:
- At work
- At home
Really, blue light is present in most situations. Using blue light in at least some of these is a good way to reduce overall exposure throughout the day.
Most workplaces now use digital technology in the form of computers, monitors, and even televisions. You can be exposed to blue light from any of these devices. This is especially the case for those that work in a typical office setting behind a computer screen all day. The longer you stare at your computer, the more you expose your retinas to blue light.
Using blue light glasses will allow you to use your computer all day without worry of blue light exposure. Glasses that also come with anti-glare features can also reduce overall eyestrain, which can result in less discomfort throughout the day.
If you work at a job with less exposure to digital screens, you may not feel a need for blue light glasses. However, you should also consider your sunlight exposure to determine if you should wear blue light glasses for part of the day anyways.
Even if you don’t necessarily need blue light glasses at work, you may need them at home.
At home, blue light can be emitted from devices such as:
- Cell phones
- Some light bulbs
All of these devices (including the one you’re reading this article on!) emit blue light, which can then make its way to your retinas. From there, your retinas can become damaged, which results in vision impairments.
If you tend to watch Netflix all night long in the evenings, you may want to invest in a pair of blue light glasses for this. This is also true for those who use their phones until they fall asleep, or those who enjoy gaming on a PC after work.
Finally, you’ll especially want to consider blue light glasses if you work remotely! Working remotely often means going fully digital, which means constant exposure to blue light between both work and home life. Blue light glasses can prevent eye strain and other issues from this long-term exposure when used regularly.
If you’re an outdoors buff, blue light glasses may be in your future. Since the sun is the primary emitter of blue light, those that spend extended time outdoors will want to protect their eyes from this high-frequency light. This is especially true for those that enjoy sports, camping, hiking, or hunting.
Since these glasses will be used outdoors, you may want to look for a pair of sunglasses that specifies blue light protection. These glasses will be able to protect your eyes from UV light, bright light, and blue light, which can result in healthier, more comfortable eyes over time. The stronger the glasses, the more protected you’ll be in the outdoors.
Finding Blue Light Glasses
Luckily, finding a pair of blue light glasses isn’t particularly difficult.
You can often find blue light glasses at stores or websites such as:
The most important aspects when looking for a pair of blue light glasses are cost and effectiveness. You should invest in a pair with a high-quality blue light coating on the lenses, which may result in a slightly higher cost. However, the glasses should remain affordable.
For prescription glasses with blue light protection, talk to your eye doctor about potential options covered by insurance. Glasses stores such as LensCrafters may also have prescription glasses with blue light coating, but you’ll have to ask them about their specific inventory.
Non-prescription blue light glasses are relatively cheap. On average, they cost anywhere between $15 and $50 depending on the type you get and if they have any additional features such as glare block. Prescription blue light glasses are typically the cost of your prescription glasses plus an extra $50 to $100 for a blue light coating on your lenses.
Protecting your eyes is one of the most important aspects of your health. Without adequate protection, you could eventually end up with impaired or lost vision, which can greatly impact your quality of life. Using a quality pair of blue light glasses can protect your eyes from harmful blue light waves that can cause damage to your retinas over time.
Remember that blue light is most often emitted from electronics such as cell phones, computers, and televisions in addition to the sun. Using blue light glasses can protect you against this blue light in the long term, so you’ll be seeing clearly for a long time.