Home Technology Impact of Blue Light on Human Eye - How harmful it is?

Impact of Blue Light on Human Eye – How harmful it is?

Last updated on August 11th, 2020 at 04:51 pm

All of us might have heard that blue light from electronic gadgets is harmful to our eyes… But do you know how and why? Well, chemists have made some recent discoveries regarding the same.

The blue light from various digital gadgets and UV rays can penetrate our eyes all the way to the retina. Consequently, it kills the most important cells there: the photoreceptors (aka the light sensors). Once there are no receptors left, there would be nothing that can convert the image to electrical impulses, and transmit them to the brain for further processing.

Dr. Ajith Karunarathne, assistant professor at the University of Toledo says, ”We are being exposed to blue light continuously, whereas our cornea and lenses cannot block or reflect the blue light back.” He also says, ”It’s no secret that blue light harms our vision by damaging the eye’s retina. Our experiments explain how this happens, and we hope this leads to therapies that slow macular degeneration, such as a new kind of eye drop.”

You need a continuous supply of retinal molecules if you want to see. Photoreceptors are useless without retinal, which is produced in the eye,” says Dr. Karunarathene.

Macular Degeneration is an incurable condition, due to the wearing down of a part of the retina called the “macula”. It usually sets in after the age of 60 and eventually leads to a permanent loss in eyesight.

Dr.Karunarathne’s lab figured out that the exposure of blue light makes retinal to trigger reactions that will synthesize poisonous chemical molecules in the photoreceptor cells.

How does the blue light effect?

Blue Light Headache

  • Blue light waves are short and flicker, causing a glare. This glare lessens visual sharpness, clarity, and contrast. It also leads to eyestrain. Do you get headaches from looking at a computer? This would explain it! All of that screen time results in physical and mental fatigue, headaches, dry and irritated eyes, neck pain, back pain, and even blurry vision. While this is generally temporary, it’s unpleasant. Staring at a device’s screen for two hours can set off the digital eyestrain and related problems. Alarmingly, 60% of us spend more than six hours per day looking at digital devices.
  • Additionally, blue light exposure at night suppresses the production of melatonin, the sleep-regulating hormone. This leads to insomnia and poor-quality sleep. It is important to keep in mind that melanin not only helps us sleep but also has an overall effect on our health.
  • Prolonged blue light exposure also damages the eyes. This can contribute to cataracts and macular degeneration, which may lead to vision loss. Our eyes filters don’t offer enough protection from the constant onslaught of blue light and the damage it causes on the retina. Kids and teens who haven’t developed any resistance to this sort of exposure are especially vulnerable. The eyes of children under 10-years-old haven’t fully developed. The lens and cornea are still mostly transparent leaving them at risk for retinal damage.

How to Protect Yourself From Blue Light Exposure

The most basic way to protect yourself from overexposure to blue light sources is limiting your (and your children’s) screen time. This is extremely important at night. Besides that, adopt good sleep hygiene by turning off your devices a few hours before bed. Also, make sure to expose yourself to bright light during the day, which will also improve your sleep.

One can also invest in blue light blocking eyewear. Thankfully, most lens companies are working on their own version of HEV blocking coating.

Video Courtesy – ” SmarterOptics

Besides this, you can view our video and blog collections in the Video Section & Blog Section of the website.

Abhijeet is a 4th-year Undergraduate Student at IIT Kharagpur. His major inclination is towards exploring the science behind the things of our day-to-day life.

Abhijeet Mahatohttp://scilynk.in
Abhijeet is a 4th-year Undergraduate Student at IIT Kharagpur. His major inclination is towards exploring the science behind the things of our day-to-day life.


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