What is Blue Light?

A Simple Breakdown

So, what is blue light and how is it affecting you?

 

Let’s dive into this problem.

 

We all know how important it is to protect our eyes from the sun’s harmful UV rays, but what about harmful blue light rays?

 

To start the answer to this question, let me give you a quick education about it.

 

Light is consisted of electromagnetic molecules that travel in waves.  These waves produce energy, and vary in strength and length. The shorter the wavelength, the higher the energy. 

 

The length of these waves is measured in nanometers (nm), with 1 nanometer equaling 1 billionth of a meter (crazy small, but crazy powerful).  Every wavelength is represented by a different color, and is grouped into categories: x-rays, gamma rays, ultraviolet (UV) rays, infrared light, visible light, and radio waves.  All of these wavelengths form the electromagnetic spectrum.

 

However, the human eye is perceptive to only one part of the electromagnetic spectrum: visible light. Visible light is the portion of the spectrum that is seen as colors: violet, indigo, blue, green, yellow, orange and red.  

 

Blue light has a very short wavelength; producing a very high amount of energy. Studies show that, over time, exposure to the blue light could cause severe long-term damage to your eyes.

 

Where is blue light? 

 

Blue light can be found just about anywhere. Its’ sources come from: the sun, tablets, TVs, smart phones, laptops, electronic devices, fluorescent lighting, and LED lighting. 

 

Having natural blue light (the sun) in your daily routine is healthy for your body because natural blue light helps regulate your sleep cycles. Imagine, without the sun, how would we know what time of day it is? The rise and fall of the sun tells our bodies when it is time to be awake, and when the proper time to fall asleep is, which is in tune with our bodies’ circadian rhythm.

 

However, with the development of technology we have been experiencing a surplus of artificial blue light (harmful light) throughout the day. The everyday work environment has been transformed through the use of computers and smart phones which we all use for countless hours throughout the day. 

 

This increased exposure to harmful blue light in our everyday lives tricks our body into thinking that it is a time to be more awake when in reality we are ready for bed. Thus, not only short-term health problems, but long-term vision effects too.