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Can You Get Prescription Blue Light Glasses?

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Do you spend a lot of time in front of a computer screen? If so, you may be at risk for digital eye strain. This is a condition that can cause headaches, fatigue, and dry eyes.

One way to help protect your eyes is to wear blue-light-blocking glasses. These glasses are designed to filter out blue light. In this blog, we’ll discuss what exactly blue light blocking glasses are and why they’re important!

Whether or not you normally wear prescription eyewear, computer glasses may benefit your vision. And always make sure your prescription is up to date with a comprehensive eye exam before purchasing new eyewear.

Understanding Digital Eye Strain

Digital eye strain is a condition that affects many people who spend time in front of a computer screen. More and more Americans are spending most of their day on digital devices. There can be some adverse effects on your vision due to the overwhelming amount of time we now spend staring at digital devices.

Also known as computer vision syndrome (CVS), this condition occurs because of several behaviors associated with computer usage. People tend to blink less, use devices with poor posture, and do too-much near-work when using digital screens. 

Another potential reason for vision discomfort is the blue light emitted from digital screens. Blue light has been shown to be disruptive to vision and sleep patterns.

Symptoms of Digital Eye Strain

Symptoms of digital eye strain are likely to occur after or during long sessions on a digital device. Here are some common symptoms of CVS:

  • Headaches
  • Fatigue
  • Blurred vision
  • Dry eye
  • Neck and shoulder pain

What is Blue Light?

Blue light is a type of visible light that comes from the sun and electronic devices such as computers, tablets, smartphones, and televisions. Blue light has a high energy wavelength that can be seen. Most digital devices use LED screens, which emit blue light while in use.

In the right dosages, blue light exposure is healthy for you and does no damage to your vision.  But because of the endless time spent on cell phones, tablets, and laptops, blue light has been linked to digital eye strain and sleep problems.

Because everyday LED devices are relatively new, there is currently limited research on the long-term effects of digital devices on your vision. 

Blue Light & Sleep Cycles

Your eyes do not naturally filter blue light. So constant exposure (ie. long computer sessions) to these light waves is not something our bodies are accustomed to. Clearly, the technological lifestyle is outpacing our biological evolution!

High exposure to blue light in the evenings can reduce melatonin levels and contribute to poor sleeping patterns. Sleep cycles affected by high exposure to blue light can lead to health complications. Blue light blocking glasses filter these wavelengths to reduce the exposure your eyes get during screen time.

A pair of blue light glasses resting on the keyboard of a laptop

What Are Blue Light Blocking Glasses?

You wear sunglasses to protect your eyes from UV rays. But digital devices are producing blue light rays whenever they’re on. That’s why blue light blocking glasses are so important! 

These glasses help to filter out the blue light. This can reduce the troubling effects connecting blue light with sleep issues. It can also slow the onset of digital eye strain during periods you must be on a computer.

Blue light blocking glasses come in a variety of styles and almost any eyeglass frame can be fitted with this type of lens.

How Are Blue Light Glasses Made?

Plastic lenses have become the most popular option for eyeglass wearers because they are lightweight and versatile. Blue light glasses use a plastic lens manufactured with a special additive. This special compound disperses blue light waves as they reach the lens. This process does not affect the transparency of the lens or its corrective power.

So, can you get prescription blue light blocking glasses? Yes! 

Treatment for Digital Eye Strain

Blue light glasses are designed to block out blue light, which is thought to be one of the causes of digital eye strain. If you normally wear prescription glasses, consider switching to blue light blocking lenses after your next eye exam.

If you wear contact lenses, you may want to consider wearing blue light glasses when you know you’ll be on your laptop for a few hours. You could opt for a prescription blue light lens, or go for a neutral lens to wear while keeping your contacts in.

Managing CVS effectively requires more than just wearing blue light glasses. Try setting up your workstation according to the American Optometric Association’s guidelines. Find ways to reduce glare on your screen and remember to blink often! Use the night mode on your mobile devices if you’re viewing screens in the evening.

The 20-20-20 Rule is a simple way to help relieve your eyes of fatigue during digital sessions. It breaks up long streaks of near-work and allows your eye muscles relief. Every 20 minutes, take a 20-second break, and look at something 20 feet away.

It Starts with Sharp Vision

Blue light glasses can help reduce the effects of digital eye strain and may help you sleep better after late-night work sessions. But making sure your eyeglass prescription is the right one is just as important. 

If you’re upgrading to blue light blocking glasses make sure to receive an eye exam before making the switch. This is also an opportunity for your eye doctor to assess your digital eye strain symptoms and make other recommendations. We don’t always want to spend as much time on our digital devices as we do. But the demands of modern life sometimes make it hard to step away. Schedule an eye appointment and take the next step in protecting your vision.

Written by Benjamin Teller

Dr. Teller earned his doctorate in optometry from the Pennsylvania College of Optometry in 1996 and has been helping local residents see clearly ever since. After graduation, Dr. Teller completed an internship with the Hopewell Valley Eye Associates, as well as several externships with the National Naval Medical Center and Katzen Eye Group.

Dr. Teller and his late business partner Dr. John McTigue felt that the Metropolitan D.C. area lacked eye care providers that offered both comprehensive eye exams as well as eye assessment and testing services. To meet this need they joined forces, and in 2000 they created Eye Rx and opened our Chevy Chase location.

A proud member of the prestigious National Advisory Eye Council, Dr. Teller works with a team of industry eyecare experts to inform and educate the National Eye Institute on the current landscape of vision medicine research and technology.

Dr. Teller continues to serve patients in the D.C. area and has dedicated his career to providing you and your family with comprehensive and holistic vision care services.

More Articles by Benjamin Teller

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