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Eye protection glasses for mobile and computer

Author : Dr Deepak Garg

Introduction

COVID has amplified the use of screens and other gadgets. This has led to concerns about digital eye strain, especially for our children. You may have heard of blue light blocking glasses or UV eye protection glasses in this regard.

These protection glasses have blue-blocking lenses. The logic is that they block the blue light that is emitted from the computer screen and relieve eye strain. For older individuals protection glasses for the mobile and laptop may also have a small power to enable the individual to see without eye strain.

Effect of screen time on eyes

Here are some of the effects that excessive use of screens can have on our eyes

  • Dryness - leading to blurred vision
  • Allergies
  • Redness
  • Watering
  • Itching
  • Discharge
  • Disturbed sleep - This occurs because blue light decreases the level of a hormone, melatonin which is responsible for sleep. This disturbs your circadian rhythm.
  • Eye Strain - especially when not wearing the correct reading glasses for older individuals. 
  • Feeling of fatigue

Solutions to reducing risks of increased screen time

Here are some tips and tricks to reduce the effects of increased use of digital screens:

  • Blink often
  • 20-20-20 rule - Take a break from your digital device every 20 minutes for 20 seconds and look 20 feet away
  • Don't sit under the draft of the air conditioner
  • Maintain correct posture while using the computer
  • Use glasses meant for looking at near things or your progressive glasses 
  • Wear blue protective or UV protection glasses - especially if you spend more than six hours on the computer. These are different from ordinary glasses.
  • Use lubricating eye drops or artificial tears  

The need for eye protection glasses

 There are two reasons why one may consider wearing computer and laptop protection glasses

1. If you are above 40 years of age then there is a possibility of you facing issues while reading small print. In that case, you may be straining your eyes while trying to look at the small fonts on the screen. To avoid this, it’s advisable to use correctly numbered reading glasses to avoid fatigue.

 2. Many of us are spending more and more time on the computer in the evenings or after the kids go to sleep. This leads to increased exposure to blue light from the screens affecting our sleep. 

Pro tip: This is not the only thing affecting sleep. It's important to not use gadgets one hour before sleeping and also to avoid alcohol and caffeine after 4 pm. It's also useful to have a winding down routine where the room lights are dimmed and lastly set the AC at 20-21 degrees celsius.

 How glasses work to protect the eyes

The logic of wearing eye protection glasses is to block blue light.

  • Blue light is present in white light and is present everywhere. Even sunlight has blue light.
  • Normally by evening, the sun goes down and we are less and less exposed to blue light.
  • Blue light reduces the level of a hormone called melatonin. This hormone is responsible for sleep. Thus, if the levels of this hormone are reduced, our sleep gets affected.
  • With the increased use of screens, this reduction in blue light that should normally be happening in the evening does not happen. 
  • This is where the blue protection glasses come in. These glasses if worn while using the screen will not lead to a reduction in levels of melatonin

Sleep is the most underrated mechanism to maintain good health. We all are aware of the effects of a disturbed sleep cycle. 

Where can you get the glasses from?

Blue blocking glasses are available everywhere. Online and offline. We believe that blue-blocking glasses are useful for those using the computer for more than 6-7 hours a day. Since they would anyway be wearing glasses it would make a lot of sense to get a complete eye examination to make sure that their eye health is normal. This eye examination would also ensure that they don't have eye power. If they do they can make blue-blocking glasses with that eye power and further reduce eye strain.

The protective glasses are available in all shapes and sizes and also in frames of different kinds. Eye Solutions has partnered with Iksana Opticals and when our patients are making glasses anyways for their eye power, it's then that we encourage them to get the blue-blocking feature also. We prefer making these lenses to order because we can then control the quality of the lens based on what the patient wants.

Conclusion

It may seem impractical to expect to have no eye issues after spending hours and hours viewing and working on screens. However, if one follows the simple tips mentioned, one may be able to keep these symptoms at bay. While the blue light blocking protection glasses have been there for some time, they dramatically rose to popularity post the COVID lockdown. We think when used by a certain group of people, like those who already wear glasses or who spend more than 6-7 hours on a computer or those who spend time on the computers in the evenings benefitted more than others.

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