Zoom calls, working from home, and remote learning are here to stay. With the increased use of screen time, you may have noticed a change in your eye health. Headaches, dry eyes, and trouble sleeping are familiar symptoms of eye strain caused by time spent on devices like phones, tablets, laptops, computers, and televisions. We often spend all day alternating between these devices for work or pleasure.

Long term damage can result from ignoring your eye health, but blue light blocking lenses can improve these symptoms, along with other changes to your technology use that are guaranteed to go a long way.

Blue light filtering lenses deflect blue light rays from reaching your eyes while you use your devices. Not all exposure to blue light is terrible, but too much can lead to adverse effects on your eyes. Utilizing blue light glasses can improve dry eyes and unhealthy sleep patterns. According to Harvard Health Publishing, blue light suppresses the secretion of melatonin (the hormone your body secretes that helps to maintain your wake and sleep cycle) more powerfully than other kinds of light. Researchers experimented comparing the effects of 6.5 hours of exposure to blue light to exposure to green light, and the blue light suppressed melatonin twice as long as the green light.

Who can wear blue light lenses?

Anyone! If you wear prescription glasses, you can have a blue light lens added to your current frames to receive these benefits. Now that many children are adjusting to a hybrid or fully remote learning schedule, they may suffer the side effects of too much screen time as well. Lenses for filtering blue light can come with various frames, and you can pick your favorite style and shape. Additionally, you do not need a prescription to purchase blue light lenses, and do not have to be a glasses wearer yourself.

Tips to protect your eyes

While wearing your blue light glasses, there are other adjustments you can make in your day to day routine to give your eyes a break:

  • Try sitting arm’s length away from your computer screen and position your screen so that you are gazing slightly down at it.
  • Take regular screen breaks. After about 20 minutes of work on your device, move your eyes to look at another object that is at least 20 feet away for 20 seconds or more.
  • Adjust the lighting in your room and increase the contrast on your screen.
  • When your eyes feel dry, use artificial tears to refresh them.
  • If possible, take time to expose yourself to natural light by stepping outside for a few minutes, or looking out your window.
  • Limit screen time right before bed by putting your phone, tablet, or laptop away at least thirty minutes before you are ready to try and fall asleep.
  • Purchase a matte filter for your computer screen to reduce glare.