Today’s lifestyle means that many people use technology. Even from an early age, people are already exposed to screens and digital devices, artificial sources of blue light associated with conditions such as myopia. This may be the reason why the number of myopia cases has skyrocketed in recent decades. By 2050, the World Health Organization (WHO) predicts that by 2050 half of the world’s population will suffer from the disease.
According to a study carried out by the international organization Parents Together, 48% of children currently spend more than six hours a day online, an increase of almost 500% compared to the years before the pandemic. “Visual fatigue is the first effect of prolonged exposure to screens, with symptoms such as red eyes, dry eyes and migraine. Blue light from LCD and LED screens have a wavelength that is harmful to the eye. It would be particularly problematic in the long term due to premature aging of the retina and the lens”, highlighted Dr. Jenny Carrillo.
Likewise, there are other associated conditions, because unlike ultraviolet light, practically all visible blue light passes through the cornea and lens, and reaches the retina. Excessive exposure to blue light has been shown to damage sensitive cells in the retina. This causes changes that mimic those of macular degeneration, which can lead to permanent vision loss. In turn, at night, prolonged use of digital tools can interrupt sleep and cause insomnia.
How can we protect ourselves from blue light?
Anti-glare and blue light filter lenses are usually an adequate solution. Some opticians, such as Visión, offer CrizalPrevencia technology, which prevents premature aging of retinal cells, physiological and neurological disorders such as alertness problems; sleep problems, mood swings, memory loss, or fluctuations in body temperature by selectively filtering harmful blue light. According to Carrillo, “Crizal technology has other advantages such as visual protection both outdoors and indoors, it reduces reflections when driving at night, it helps to reduce visual fatigue, irritation, red eyes, blurred vision, and it protects the eyes from UVA and UVB rays. They are also easy to clean and scratch resistant”.
Among other recommendations to prevent eye damage are:
- Apply the 20-20-20 rule, every 20 minutes of fixing your eyes, take breaks of at least 20 seconds looking at an object 6 meters away.
- Also, do not watch television less than 2 meters away or in complete darkness.
- Visit the optometrist once a year, especially boys and girls, to detect possible visual problems in time.