Jessica Sarrach ‘24, News Editor
Schools have adapted to online learning, per COVID-19 requirements, resulting in prolonged exposure to blue light. Blue light is light emitted from screens such as computers, phones, and tablets, and overexposure can be very harmful.
In essence, the blue light that our eyes are exposed to with prolonged technology usage can severely damage the survival rate of our corneal epithelial cells. This layer of cells is what protects the eye’s cornea from tears and bacteria that could harm it. The damage to the corneal epithelial cells makes the eye more susceptible to infection, perforation, and vision loss.
In addition, there are many added risks to the extended usage of blue light devices, and as Dr. Peter Murphy, a pulmonologist for Mercy San Juan medical center said, “Prolonged periods of blue light exposure can lead to eye conditions and overall health issues such as eye strain, dry eyes, blurred vision, headaches, and sleep disruption.” The multitude of effects from exposure to blue light brings high concern to the students’ health.
Eyes are one of the most useful tools for navigating the world. With students spending close to seven hours on screen for multiple days a week, health concerns are raised for the population. Though there is a solution that seems promising: blue light prevention glasses.
Blue light prevention glasses can help to counteract the harmful light. They have prevention lenses with filters that can absorb most of the blue light rays before they reach the eye. While blue light glasses cannot completely get rid of the blue light waves that travel to the eyes, they can greatly reduce it.
The blue light glasses are a practical solution to preserve students’ health. Any student troubled with blue light disruption issues can easily head to Amazon and buy a pair, reducing their symptoms.
Many students have already taken it upon themselves to get the proper eye protection. Junior Christine Silak said, “I used to get really bad headaches from my computer, so I asked my dad to buy me blue light glasses. The glasses really helped me, and now I get way less headaches.” The efforts to reduce the impact of blue light were highly successful to Silak, and hold promise for others.
In these uncertain times, the community is forced into routines opposing their regular way of life. With social distancing guidelines in place, online schooling is the optimal solution, but it is not without faults. The serious side effects of blue light rays are dangerous, but there is hope with the solution of blue light glasses.