Do you find yourself staring at a screen most the day? Our average screen time is increasing. I’m always finding myself in front of a phone, computer or tv. It just tends to be a way of life now. The average office worker spends 1700 hours in front of a screen per year. That’s just while at work. Think about adding a phone into the mix.
There is a lot of negative effect from screen time including headaches, eye strain and loss of sleep. Companies like Apple are introducing measures to make us more aware of our screen time.
One of the hot topics on screen time is the effect of blue light and loss of sleep. Blue light is just a spectrum of light that is found naturally from the sun, light bulbs and also screens. It’s said that blue light helps people stay alert.
After sunset, our bodies start producing melatonin, the hormone that helps us sleep. Before artificial light, the sun was all our bodies had to regulate sleep patterns. Now we are constantly exposed, and the natural production of melatonin is delayed. It’s argued that blue light is particularly harmful as it keeps us alert. It should be said, there is a lot of conflicting evidence about the effects of blue light.
What does technology have to do with this? The LED light source in technology gives of significantly more blue light than other fluorescent light sources (light bulbs etc).
You may have seen “blue light glasses” advertised for sale. Their big selling point is that the glasses have UV filters. UV filters are said to reduce or block the blue light waves hitting your eyes while looking at a screen. They should be worn throughout the day and night while using your computer, phone or watching tv.
Should you get blue light glasses? If you use a lot of technology after dark and have trouble sleeping, then there is evidence to suggest that blue light glasses may help. Another useful method is to spend 20 minutes on and 20 minutes off technology. Here are some more tips.