If you’ve switched to working or learning from home during the lockdown, chances are you’re probably spending more time in front of a screen than you used to. Even as the lockdown eases, we’ve found productive ways of working digitally and zoom has found an important place in everyone’s lives. If you’re concerned about your health (as most people are!), here is a roundup of the top ways you can protect yourself from screens this year;
Blue light Glasses
Blue light glasses are the quickest way to see a positive difference if you’re suffering from digital eye strain and headaches. They also prevent your sleep rhythm from being disturbed, making it easy for you to fall asleep even if you are using screens till late
Blue light glasses are of 2 types, according to which time of the day they are worn- and they shouldn’t be mixed up!
Blue light Computer Glasses for Daytime
Blue light computer glasses for daytime have light, clear lenses to be used when you are exposed to artificial light coming from screens, phones, tablets and LED lights.
Here is a quick overview of what makes a good pair of blue light glasses
- They should filter not only blue light, but also green light upto 550nm, as studies have shown that melatonin production is disrupted by green light too
- At least 50% of blue and 50% of green light should be filtered- any less would make them futile.
- A spectral test report should be available on the website as proof of efficiency.
Blue light blocking glasses for night time
Blue light blocking glasses for nighttime have powerful, tinted lenses and are used after sundown to increase melatonin levels. The lack of blue and green light signals to the brain that it is time to wind down and get ready for sleep.
An efficient pair of nighttime glasses should;
- Target both blue and green light across the entire spectrum from 400-550nm
- Block 100% of blue light and 100% of green light- any less would keep the brain in wake-mode.
- A spectral test report should be available on the website as proof of efficiency.
If you’re curious about how blue light glasses work, why blue light wakes us up and what to look for when buying blue light glasses, click the links to learn more about the fascinating science behind how blue light impacts us.
Blue Light-Free lighting
When it comes to blue light, it’s pretty common for us to become focused on reducing screen time, but the problem may also be the lighting in your house. This is because protecting eyes from blue light may not be enough. Our skin cells also have receptors for blue light. Cutting down screen time an hour or two before bed helps reduce alertness and makes it easier for you to fall asleep. Still, the blue light in LEDs and tube lights emits short-wavelength blue light that suppresses melatonin and makes you stay awake longer than usual.
Replacing blue-light-rich traditional lighting with blue light-free lighting gives you the protection that blue light glasses miss out on and helps you sleep better and perform better at work the next day.
How does blue light-free lighting work?
Blue light free bulbs are designed to;
- filter out the high-energy blue and green light wavelengths that disrupt our circadian rhythm
- have low EMF (electric and magnetic field radiation) and;
- no flicker. Light flickering (even slight flickering that is unnoticeable) causes various health problems, including eyes, headaches, blurry sight, fatigue, reduced task performance, and in some instances, neurological issues.
Our blue-light blocking bulbs are designed to filter out the high-energy wavelengths that are disruptive to sleep and eyesight.
There are two types: of blue-light free lighting, amber lights and red lights (as with glasses).
Sweet Dreams Amber Lights
These light bulbs block 100% of blue light and gives off a warm and relaxing yellow-orange hue, compared to the sharp white-blue glare of LEDs and fluorescent lights. This is general-purpose lighting to be used throughout the home. Replace regular LED lights with the SweetDreams amber light bulbs which are low emf, flicker-free, and emit no blue light.
Twilight Red Lights
Our Twilight red light bulbs go a step further- they not only 100% free of any blue light that causes you to become alert and delay sleep, but they also don’t emit any green light at all, this allows them to stimulate sleep by mimicking the colours of the sunset. The deep orange and red colours produced when the sun is setting, signal to your brain to begin producing melatonin and prepare for sleep.
Since red lights are dimmer, it’s best to use red light bulbs on your bedside lamps or areas you are winding down in the evening prior to bed. That way, you can switch off other lights an hour or two before bed and turn your red lights on, making your home a sleep-inducing environment.
Blue light-free Booklights
If you’re a fan of reading before bed but your partner or roommates are not, amber light book lamps may just be the answer. Amber light is less offensive to the eyes and doesn’t disrupt your sleep schedule like blue light does. This means that you won’t have trouble falling asleep on nights when you’re not working late. If your kid likes reading before bed, then an amber lamp will make transitioning to sleep quicker for them.
Our NoBlue Amber Book Light can be clipped onto the book or headboard, features 3 brightness settings, and lasts for 16+ hours on battery.
Blue light free sleep lamps
Blue light-free sleep lamps are available in both red and amber, depending on how much protection you require.
We created the NoBlue Amber Sleep Lamps with versatility in mind. They can be used on battery or plugged in and has 3 brightness levels depending on whether you’re reading or preparing for bed. Just like all our other blue-free lighting, they are also no-flicker, low emf and are completely blue-light free.
Red plugin night lights
These small, red plugin lights are dim lights that make it possible for you to see at night, without disrupting sleep or melatonin levels. Perfect for kids who are afraid of the dark or for nursing mothers.
Red night lights are super handy if you have a baby. The constant waking-up at night will be less painful if you don’t have to switch on a blinding light and ruin your sleep every time!
Red Light Torches
If you find that switching on the light when you get up at night chases away your sleep, try using a red light torch. A sudden burst of white light when your eyes are accustomed to darkness can be blinding and painful to your eyes. Human eyes also adjust faster to red light than white light. In the dark, our pupils widen to allow more light to enter. In the light, they shrink accordingly. Red light doesn’t cause our pupils to shrink as much as bluish/white light, which is why our eyes adjust quicker. This is why alarm clocks often have red light numbers so you can see at night without straining your eyes or disturbing your sleep pattern.
Red light torches are great for when you or your kid has to go to the bathroom or for navigating your way around the house at night.
Our red light torches block 100% of blue light and 100% of green light across the entire spectrum. This is because blue light is not the only culprit- green light upto 550nm is disruptive to sleep patterns.
Red light therapy devices
Red light therapy is a treatment that helps skin, muscles, tissue and other parts of your body to heal. In this therapy, the targeted area of the body is exposed to red and infrared light. Both have long wavelengths and carry low-energy levels. The only difference is that you can see red light, but you can’t see infrared light.
Red light therapy is also referred to as low-level laser therapy (LLLT), low-power laser therapy (LPLT), and photobiomodulation (PBM).
How does red light therapy work?
Physiotherapists, dermatologists and psychologists use red light therapy for their patients for a variety of purposes. Red light therapy is used in many different settings with different objectives, but the underlying principle remains the same. Red light creates a biochemical effect in cells which strengthens mitochondria. As you may remember from your Biology classes, mitochondria are the ‘powerhouse’ of the cells- they take in nutrients (from your food) and use oxygen to generate energy for the body. With more power, cells function efficiently, can rejuvenate themselves and repair damage more quickly.
Unlike lasers or IPLs, red light therapy doesn’t harm the skin’s surface. Lasers and IPLs work by damaging the skin and forcing the tissue to repair itself. Red Light Therapy stimulates regeneration without harmful side effects. This is why it’s safe to use red light therapy at home.
What to look for when buying red light therapy devices:
If you’re looking into buying a red light therapy device for convenient treatment at home, keep the following in mind;
- Check which wavelengths the device is emitting- the device will not be helpful if it only releases visible red light region (660nm) and none in the near-infrared region (850nm). So any red bulb (with a red plastic cover on white light) won’t work.
- Ensure the panels do not release excessive heat when used for an extended period- this will damage your skin if brought into contact for an extended period.
- Choose a device that has low EMF. According to some studies, Electromotive forces can affect your body’s nervous system, damage cells and have even been linked to cancer.
- Choose a device with no flicker- this will be easier on your eyes.
Our red light therapy panels have all of the above characteristics and are built to be both portable and powerful. Spectral test reports from labs are available for all the products on our site.
Blue Light Screen Protectors
If blue light glasses aren’t your thing, instead of shielding your eyes, put a filter over your phone. Like other screen protectors, it is made of a glass panel that you can stick to your laptop or mobile screen. Aside from protecting your screen from scratches, it cuts back on glare and filters blue light. While some screen protectors leave a yellowish or coloured tint, our iPhone screen filter filters the high-energy blue light wavelengths without compromising on the display.
Light Blocking Sleep Masks
Eye health doesn’t end with hitting the pillow and fall asleep. If you sleep in an environment where street lights filter through or the light is turned on by roommates at night, your sleep quality may be reduced without you realizing it. The skin on our eyelids is the thinnest on our body (<1 mm). Blue Light filtering through our eyelids disrupts our REM and Deep Sleep. This may cause you to wake up feeling unrefreshed. Sleep Masks block 100% of blue light and create a pitch-black environment and increase sleep quality.
But sleeping masks are just so inconvenient right? They slip off as we toss in bed and are plain uncomfortable while they’re on.
That’s why we crafted the Deluxe Delta Sleep Masks. We had experienced the pain of wearing sleep masks that were too big or too small, so we created the Delta sleep masks from memory foam and with adjustable straps to fit the contour of all face sizes.
These sleep masks have eye-cups that create a complete blackout to give you the best sleep of your life.
Inger, R., Bennie, J., Davies, T., & Gaston, K. (2014). Potential Biological and Ecological Effects of Flickering Artificial Light. Plos ONE, 9(5), e98631. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0098631