When I imagined the fall semester of my junior year of college, I imagined hands-on experiences, being constantly surrounded by my friends in student media organizations, working together to create content that we are proud of. I imagined going out with groups of friends, pushing tables and chairs together to fit more of us together. I imagined face-to-face conferences with my professors, learning from asking questions and receiving the valued, in-person education that helps me learn best. I never imagined the fall semester of my junior year being almost entirely online.
I knew that online classes would bring a lot of adjusting, a lot of getting used to almost being my own professor, holding myself accountable for my work and being responsible enough to get it done on time, but I didn’t know that my assignments and Zoom calls would come with a large side of migraines.
One of the ways that I have fought constant migraines this semester is by wearing blue light glasses. These glasses are oftentimes tinted yellow and work by limiting your eyes’ exposure to blue light, which has shorter wavelengths and emits more energy than rays higher on the spectrum. I’ve assembled a list of a few benefits that blue light glasses can bring to your life.
- Prevent eye irritation, discomfort and pain
While blue light is everywhere and impossible to avoid, there are ways to make the effects of exposure to blue light less significant. Blue light glasses limit the eyes’ exposure to blue light and make it easier to stare at screens for a longer period of time while protecting from potential damage to your retina.
The human eye makes use of the cornea and lens to prevent light rays from reaching the retina at the back of your eye, which is light-sensitive. Humans are decent at blocking light rays on the red end of the spectrum from reaching your retina, but less effective when it comes to rays near the bottom. Nearly all of the blue light you see makes its way to the retina of your eye.
By limiting your overall exposure to blue light and wearing tinted glasses, you can prevent digital eye strain, otherwise known as computer vision syndrome. Wearing blue light glasses will not only allow you to look at your screen for longer periods of time, but as a college student taking online classes, more screen time can lead to more productivity.
- Fight headaches and migraines
Constant exposure to blue light can not only cause discomfort for your eyes and vision but can have longer effects on the neurological side. Research has found that a neural pathway from the eyes to the brain allows blue light wavelengths to travel, ultimately causing headaches and migraines. Wearing blue light glasses will limit the amount of blue light reaching your brain and therefore possibly prevent headaches from occurring.
- Improve your sleep schedule
Blue light rays affect your internal clock, therefore impacting your sleep schedule. The high energy of blue light rays is known to increase your body’s alert state and delay the release of melatonin, a natural hormone that induces sleep. Melatonin is produced by your brain in response to darkness, and constant exposure of your retina to blue light tricks your brain into believing it is still light outside.
The best part about blue light glasses is that they are relatively cheap and easy to find! Accessorize with your blue light glasses and protect your eyes and sleep schedule while doing so!