Blue Light Glasses: A Life-Changing Essential or a Pseudoscience Scam?

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Talia Sinclair, Contributing Writer

As the school year progresses, students are spending increasing amounts of time on their screens.  They are required to use computers, phones, and other electronics for nearly seven hours a day as a result of online school.  Many extracurricular activities that would offer time away from screens have been forced to move online, giving students little free time from the harsh blue light of electronics.  Due to this escalating amount of time on their screens, many feel physical repercussions from extra hours on their devices.  

 “When the sun goes down, the lack of light signals our bodies to start producing melatonin, the hormone responsible for making us fall asleep,” said Sarah Mitroff in an article on CNET.  

Despite the evidence that people have been exposed to an increasing amount of blue light, some researchers say that it might not be actually internally harmful because people are already exposed to this light every day through the sun.  

“We actually do need some blue light to be healthy.  Research has shown that high-energy visible light, such as blue light, boosts alertness, helps memory, improves cognitive function, and elevates mood,” said an eye surgeon at the Raleigh Eye Centre.

  Headaches, eye strain, and blurred vision are some of the many downfalls of staring at blue light-emitting screens all day.  Some might retreat to short-term solutions, such as eye drops or medication, to relieve headaches.  For most, this is not a sustainable or healthy solution, so blue light glasses are used instead. These are glasses with lenses that are said to block or filter out blue light.

The blue light emitted from technology is potentially dangerous and could damage your eyes.  The most easily injured part of the eye by these blue light emissions is the retina.  The retina converts light to neural signals and translates it to your brain.  This is a side effect that one might not recognize right away.  

However, blue light glasses claim to not only help with long-term problems but with short-term ones as well.  The glasses lessen eye strain, which reduces pesky headaches.  Moreover, the blue light glasses may help some people fall asleep faster, as they are less exposed to the blue light of computers and cell phones.  The glasses can be very beneficial to those whose daily lives revolve around a screen.  

“Blue light glasses are very helpful.  They reduce the headaches that I get from staring at a screen for seven hours straight,” said sophomore Gaby Sorin.  

 Fortunately, many companies have started to carry these glasses for a fairly low cost.  Most glasses range from as little as fifteen dollars to as much as $400.  The most expensive pair is the Tom Ford model, which sells for $415.  While these glasses are way out of the average person’s price range, many say that the cheap glasses work just as well as the expensive ones.  

“I got a pair from Amazon for $15.  I’ve had them for a few months now, and I think they work really well.  They have definitely helped reduce headaches and eye strain,” said sophomore Perry McLoughlin.

While there are many credible reviews and articles backing up the science of blue light glasses, some users remain skeptical.  As technology and it’s side effects are relatively new, many question if the research behind these glasses is actually plausible.   Considering all of the positive and negative aspects of blue light glasses, ultimately it is up to the consumer to have the final decision on whether or not they are worth it.