Screen time is now an integral part of our lives from babies through to adults. Without laptops, smartphones, TVs, e-readers and computers life as we know simply wouldn’t exist. Our emails would go unanswered, our Instagram posts unliked, The Bachelor unwatched. But like a lot of good things in life, screen time comes with a big fat negative: blue light exposure.
Blue light is a colour in the visible light spectrum that can be seen by the human eye. Light is made up of electromagnetic particles that travel in waves. These waves emit energy, and range in length and strength. The shorter the wavelength; the higher the energy. Blue light has a very short wavelength, and so produces a higher amount of energy.
High energy blue light emitted from artificial sources such as smartphones and laptops can penetrate the macular pigment over time, causing damage to the retina which can lead to macular degeneration. In fact, cases of macular degeneration have increased by 25% in the last twelve years and blue light is thought to be a major factor.
But never fear, here are 5 key ways to support your eye health and help protect them from blue light damage:
- Adjust your eyes and your settings: The ‘Night Shift’ is a special setting offered on all iPhones, while Samsung devices have a blue light filter designed to minimize the amount of blue light displayed on its screens. You can also decrease the brightness of your computer screen to mimic the surrounding light levels and allow your eyes some respite.
- Switch up your surroundings: Take a break from indoor light as much as possible. Eat lunch outdoors, opt for some outside exercise or take walking meetings to relieve visual fatigue and utilise some nature therapy.
- Protect your eyes with smart supplements: Use a multivitamin that is also high in carotenoid Lutein and Zeaxanthin; these antioxidants are naturally found in the eye but are not produced by the body. They act as natural filter for the eye absorbing up to 80% of all blue light before it can damage the retina. Bioglan’s Multi + Vision Advanced also contains Astaxanthin, an antioxidant that crosses the blood retinal barrier and has been clinically studied to reduce eye fatigue and strain associated with screen usage.
- Exercise your eyes: Imagine if you were at the gym and held a dumbbell in one hand for 8 hours straight - your bicep would be extremely sore! The same thing happens to our eye muscles when we stare at a screen for hours at a time. To relieve eye muscles, take a 20-20-20 break. Every 20 minutes, give yourself 20 seconds to look at what is happening 20 metres away from you
Enhance your eyewear: Baxter Blue glasses filter out harmful blue light to give you peace of mind as you work; protecting the retina while increasing the style stakes. We’ve got you sorted.
-  Gehrs Km, Anderson Dh, Johnson Lv, Hageman Gs. Age-Related Macular Degeneration—Emerging Pathogenetic And Therapeutic Concepts. Annals Of Medicine. 2006;38(7):450-471. Doi:10.1080/07853890600946724.
- Roberts JE, Dennison J. The Photobiology of Lutein and Zeaxanthin in the Eye. Journal of Ophthalmology. 2015;2015:687173. doi:10.1155/2015/687173.
 Nagaki Y, Hayasaka S, Yamada T, Hayasaka Y, Sanada M, Uonomi T. Effects of astaxanthin on accommodation, critical flicker fusion, and pattern visual evoked potential in visual display terminal workers. . J Trad Med. 2002;19:170–173