There is a lot of debate over what percentage of blue light should be blocked to avoid harmful effects on the body. Some scientists believe that up to 90% of blue light should be blocked to avoid any negative health effects. Others say that up to 75% of blue light should be blocked. The final decision comes down to individual preferences and how cautious you wish to be.
What is blue light?
Blue light is a type of color in the visible light spectrum that can be seen by human eyes. It is a short wavelength, which means it releases higher amounts of energy.
Blue light is prevalent everywhere in our world. The sun used to be the only source of blue light but now we have easier access to it by way of digital screens found on modern technologies (like TVs, smartphones, computers, laptops, tablets, and gaming systems), electronic devices, LED, and fluorescent lighting.
Blue light wavelengths are everywhere and they surround us. In fact, they are the reason why the sky appears blue. The short blue wavelengths collide with air molecules, which results in the blue light scattering and making our eyes process the sky as blue. Blue light is also a natural resource that helps regulate our body clocks (sleep and wake cycles), also known as our circadian rhythm. Blue light can also help boost our alertness, elevate our moods, heighten our reaction times, and increase our overall feeling of well-being. But too much blue light or exposure to blue light after dark may have negative effects on one’s health.
What are blue light glasses?
Blue-light blocking glasses have filters in their lenses that stop or absorb blue light, and in some cases UV light, from getting through. That means using these glasses when looking at a screen, especially after dark, can help reduce exposure to blue light waves that otherwise can keep our mind and body awake. Most glasses are meant to be worn during the day while working in front of a computer, and at night to prevent the blue light from screens from keeping us awake.
These are the best shops to buy blue light blocking glasses in 2022:
- Felix Gray
- Warby Parker
- The Book Club
- Tomahawk Shades
Glasses with red- or orange-tinted lenses block a wider spectrum or range and a larger percentage of blue light. However, they can also distort the colors shown on your computer screen. Clear or light yellow-tinted glasses are made to target a narrower range of high-energy blue light that is commonly emitted from artificial sources.
Why is blue light bad for your eyes?
Blue light is bad for your eyes because it emits a wavelength that can damage the retina. If you’re looking at something blue light-emitting, for an extended period of time, your eyes may start to suffer from retinal damage. This can lead to vision problems and even blindness. Blue light also negatively affects sleep if you’re exposed to it near your bedtime.
How does blue light affect sleep?
Circadian rhythms are finely-tuned, 24-hour cycles that make our bodies aware of when to carry out essential functions. Light is the most significant factor in organizing circadian rhythms and, throughout human history, these rhythms were closely aligned with sunrise and sunset.
With the rise of artificial light and electronic use, people are being exposed to surging amounts of light before bedtime. All kinds of visible light can affect circadian rhythms, but blue light has the most impact,
We receive most of our exposure to blue light from the sun. Blue light controls parts of the brain that make us feel alert, elevating our body temperature and heart rate. During the day, blue light can refine performance and attention, tuning our circadian rhythm and preparing us for a better night’s sleep after the sun sets.
Furthermore, properly-timed exposure to blue light can treat a number of sleep disorders. Circadian rhythm disorders happen when a person’s circadian rhythms aren’t aligned with their environment. Light therapy, blue light, in particular, can help rearrange the body’s circadian rhythms and improve sleep.
Blue light suppresses the body’s production of melatonin, a hormone that makes us feel sleepy. While this might be advantageous during the day, it is disruptive when we are attempting to sleep at night. Our brain may believe that it is still daytime if we are exposed to blue light at night. This can throw off our circadian cycles and keep us awake rather than sleepy.
Chronic circadian rhythm disruption can also have harmful effects on health, including metabolic diseases and mental health issues like depression. It’s crucial to understand the sources of blue light and ways to lower the dangers given the serious health effects linked to exposure to it after dark.
One of the ways that technological items might disrupt sleep is by emitting blue light. The best strategy would be to turn off alerts before going to bed and to avoid bringing light-emitting devices into your bedroom. Melatonin synthesis is aided by darkness; it is inhibited by blue light.
What are the health benefits of blue light?
Exposure to blue light has several important health benefits. It can:
- Helps you stay alert – A 2018 study has revealed that exposure to blue light can increase your reaction time and stimulate alertness even when you’re not at your peak performance time of day.
- Boosts memory and cognitive function – Participants in a 2017 study were subjected to a 30-minute blue light “washout” period and have demonstrated to perform better on verbal memory and memory consolidation tasks afterward. Meanwhile, study participants who had an amber light “washout” didn’t perform as well.
- Potentially improve seasonal depression – Blue light therapy is now one of the go-to treatments to cure seasonal depression. Researchers have found that it’s also an efficient treatment even for depression that isn’t seasonal, particularly when combined with antidepressant medications.
- Helps with some skin conditions – A 2015 review has shown that blue light eliminates acne-causing bacteria and lowers inflammation in acne breakouts. In some cases, actinic keratosis and plaque psoriasis have both been improved by treatment with blue light. A 2018 study also showed that blue light therapy was effective in treating basal cell carcinoma tumors.
What does blue light in a fish tank do?
In a fish aquarium, blue LED lighting produces a relaxing atmosphere. Blue light, according to many fish aficionados, is important for the change from day to night. As blue light resembles the moonlight, you can use the light in the evenings to entice less observant fish to emerge from their hiding places.
Blue LED lighting, also called moonlight blue bulbs, also supports your fish tank plants and helps your nocturnal fish to feed. However, it’s important to remember that this subtle light should be switched off at night so that your fish can sleep peacefully.
How does blue light whiten teeth?
The procedure involves the dentist applying a whitening gel to your teeth. Then, they will use a blue LED light, which is important to activate the hydrogen peroxide or carbamide peroxide whitening gel. This method also helps break apart the gel faster. The resulting chemical reaction from this lifts stains off your teeth and whitens them.