Effects of Blue Light
To compound this exposure, we are also now spending an ever increasing amount of time on our digital devices, such as mobile smart phones and laptops. These screens emit light at wavelengths ranging from 400nm to 500nm, known as “blue light”. This light is of particular concern after sundown. A study published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, found that blue light is a powerful suppressant of melatonin, the hormone associated with sleep, playing havoc with the circadian rhythm, rendering us unable to distinguish night from day. This confusion occurs when the blue light is perceived by the retina. In the aforementioned study, participants exposed to blue light had increased levels of alpha brainwaves (8 – 12 Hz), associated with alertness, whilst melatonin was suppressed by almost 85%.
Disturbances in the circadian rhythm have wide ranging consequences beyond the expected fatigue that would be experienced as a result of poor sleep. A Harvard Medical School Review lists many adverse consequences of prolonged blue light exposure. This includes symptoms such as blurred vision, eye strain, depression and headaches. An increase is blood sugar levels has also been observed in those exposed to blue light, with further hypothesised implications such as diabetes and other chronic diseases.
With demands placed upon us in our busy lives, it is not always possible to simply avoid devices at night, although it is advisable to make a conscious effort to avoid this for at least an hour before bed. In addition, blocking out this light is highly recommended. As writing content for our website requires significant screen time, this is very relevant to us. I have been trialling EXYRA for the past 2 weeks and have already noticed improvements in my sleep and energy levels. EXYRA glasses are manufactured using an innovative lens technology utilising a photochromic dye that absorbs and blocks blue light from entering the retina (watch video here). We cannot stress enough the importance of sleep in our health and wellbeing.