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Blue Filter Myth Buster

Posted · Blog

Blue Filter Lenses: Everything you need to know

You have probably heard of blue filter lenses, the blue-light blocking glasses which have exploded in popularity due to the increase in people’s screen time brought about by the pandemic.

We wanted to help explain just what blue light is, as well as dispel some myths around the popular lenses and help you decide if they are right for your lifestyle.

What is blue light?

Blue light makes up a very small part of the electromagnetic spectrum - the term used by scientists to describe the entire range of light that exists. Blue light forms part of the light spectrum that is visible to most human eyes. Although a large source of this is sunlight, it can also be caused by manmade source including computers, tablets, smartphones and other digital screens.

Although this is only a fraction of that emitted by the sun, however the amount of time people spend using these devices and the proximity of these screens to the eyes has caused some concern about potential long-term effects.

MYTH 1: Blue light can give you headaches

False: Blue light is commonly blamed for the persistent headaches that come from staring at screens for hours on end. However, headaches are just one symptom of what is known as computer vision syndrome (CVS) or digital eye strain. Symptoms of CVS can include watery or dry eyes, sensitivity to light, headaches and blurred vision. These issues can be caused by a variety of factors, including screen glare, the distance between you and your screen, and not taking sufficient breaks. So, although you may be experiencing eye irritation from a long day working on your computer, your eye discomfort is not directly from the blue light itself.

Duncan and Todd can help with a number of solutions for digital eye strain including hints and tips for better managing your time staring at a screen, eye drops and even specially designed lenses for screen use.

MYTH 2: Blue light can harm your eyes

False: While blue light lenses do effectively block blue light from entering the eyes, researchers have been unable to determine whether this has a positive effect on eye health. Research has shown that the amount of blue light emitted by our electronic devices is smaller than the amount emitted through ordinary sunlight and does not harm our eyes. Furthermore, regulations have been introduced to limit the amount of blue light emitted by electronic devices. This has further reduced the level of blue light emitted by everyday objects. This means that there is no current research to suggest that this can improve or protect your eye health.

MYTH 3: Wearing Blue Filter Lenses can help reduce screen time

Maybe: Anecdotal evidence suggests that wearing blue lenses can make you more conscious of the time you’re spending looking at a screen, and this awareness can lead to more conscious efforts to reduce screen time. This can lead to your eyes feeling more rested, as our eyes become strained when looking at something too closely for long periods of time we tend to blink less when looking at screens. So, there may be a reason to buy blue filter lenses, even if it isn’t the reason you thought it would be.

Now that you know some facts about blue light blocking lenses you will be able to decide if they are the right solution for you.

Duncan and Todd Opticians provides a range of fantastic lens products for all needs and budgets, including a selection which includes blue filter material. These lenses have been developed in Duncan and Todd’s own state-of-the-art laboratory, Caledonian Optical based in Aberdeen.

As a leading professional eyecare specialist for almost 50 years, Duncan and Todd is committed to offering a blend of inspirational style, affordability and professional service, to the community, with practices across Scotland offering household eyecare brands including 20 20 Opticians, JM MacDonald, I C Andrew, Douglas Dickie Opticians and Browns Opticians.

All Duncan and Todd optometrists are registered with the General Optical Council, ensuring that patients are provided with the highest quality eyecare via fully qualified practitioners.