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Digital Eye Strain and Blue Light Filters

Digital Eye Strain and Blue Light Filters

Eye Strain from Digital Devices and the use of Blue Light Filters

Some important questions answered.

The increased use of digital devices in the modern era has brought about concerns of how damaging the artificial blue light rays emitted from these devices may be on our eyes, and how blue light 'blockers' have been developed to protect us from these. The frequent use of digital devices means our eyes are shifting from close up and far away distances more times in a day than ever before, which can cause a strain on the muscles and make our eyes feel tired and lead to blurrier vision or neck strain. Below we address some of the most common questions we get asked and some solutions that may help.  


What is blue light? 

Blue-violet light is one of the colours on the spectrum. The hazard zone is said to be between 390 - 440nm.  On one-hand we need blue light to help generate our natural sleep/wake cycles, but on the other hand too much exposure from digital devices can be of concern. We protect ourselves from UV rays using sunglasses and UV protection, and now the discussion is around protection us from blue-light rays as well. 

Is blue light damaging my eyes? 

The most recent evidence only suggests extreme exposure to blue light MAY cause damage in the long-run. Therefore, it is very important to note that whilst you may be seeing unjustified information claiming that blue light IS damaging your eyes, the UK College of Optometry concluded in 2018 that "there is no strong evidence that blue-blocking spectacle lenses will improve visual performance, alleviate symptoms of eye strain or improve sleep quality. It is also unclear whether blue-light filtering lenses preserve macular health or alter the risks associated with the development or progression of age-related macular degeneration". 

It is also important to note that over-exposure to digital devices is a relatively new concept for the current generations, and over time as our eyes develop the effects that blue light rays have may be more conclusive. 


Is there a solution and will it make a difference? 

To combat digital eye strain, our lens lab Zeiss have created a 'digital lens' that helps assist those who struggle to focus after extended periods of device use. It is specifically designed for people in their 30's who are experience near-vision discomfort for the first time. More information on this style of lens is here.

Blue light 'blockers' are lens coatings designed to block out portions of blue light rays from hitting our eye. Whilst it is not conclusive that damage is being done, some people find blue light filters address their concerns, and the warmer tone that these coatings have are more comfortable to look through when using digital devices. Information on the Zeiss DuraVision Blue Protect can be found here.

It is good to know that all of our Zeiss lenses both sunglass and clear block out 100% of UV Rays. Currently only about 20% of lenses on the market do so.  


Is there anything else I can do to help my eye strain? 

Here are a few steps you can follow daily can help to reduce the level of eye strain you may experience on a typical day. 

20-20-20 Rule 

Every 20 minutes, look at something 20 feet away for 20 seconds. This will help your eye muscles to relax from focusing on close up devices for extended periods of time. If possible, regular breaks that involve walking around and going outside are strongly recommended. 

Have Regular Eye Checks 

It is important to have regular eye checks (every 2 years), even if you feel like you can see and read properly, it is crucial to ensure the health of your eye is being monitored. 

Use Night Mode

It is recommended to not use your digital device before falling asleep, but if you do you should use the night mode and turn down the brightness to help reduce the amount of artificial blue light being emitted at night.