Do projectors emit blue light? Yes! Projectors do emit blue light and that can be harmful to your eyes (!). This type of light contains high amounts of short-wavelength (blue) and low levels of long-wavelength (red).
Although small amounts may not cause any problems, extensive exposure to this kind of light can lead to serious eye-health issues.
It is recommended that all adults get only 4-5 hours of screen use a day. At the same time, children ages 8 to 16 should get no more than 2 hours per day. Younger children have a much higher risk for developing myopia and other vision problems if their eyes are exposed to excessive amounts of blue light.
If they spend too much time in front of screens, it will slow down the development of their eyes, which may lead to them becoming nearsighted as adults.
Problems of Blue Light
Ever been on the computer for hours, not really feeling it, but telling yourself to keep going? You might want to reconsider that if you can.
The blue light from screens messes with your body’s natural production of melatonin and also tells your brain it’s time to wake up. It may not be a big deal for an hour or two, but consider how many hours a day you spend looking at a screen and the toll it takes on everything.
You probably know all about sleep deprivation by now — how it causes weight gain and even risk of mortality; how it leaves you groggy in the morning; how you feel like utter garbage without getting enough quality shut-eye.
But are you aware of the powerful effects screens can have on your melatonin production?
I’ve addressed the negative impacts of screens, including things like blue light and excessive screen time, in several articles over the years. I even have a whole article devoted to it: The Problem with Blue Light.
Along the way, I’ve spoken to a lot of people about exactly how much screen time they’re actually spending, and how severe their sleep problems really are. Some were using screens for 10 hours or more every night, some only a little over an hour. Many were suffering seriously from sleep deprivation problems, but none knew it yet.
I have worked with people in similar situations, and they had similar problems — but it wasn’t until we addressed the screen use that their problems began to resolve. So I think it’s important to look at the impact of the screens on much more than your ability to focus.
What I find most fascinating is how many people who also regularly use screens aren’t as aware of all that screen time is doing to them as I am.
For a lot of people, the time spent looking at a screen comes completely without awareness — either they’re not particularly concerned about it or they simply aren’t paying attention to it.
How Can Blue Light Damage One’s Eyes?
Blue light can come from a range of sources, such as televisions, computer screens, and high-intensity lamps. It can also come from the sun.
When these sources are used for long periods of time without adequate eye protection, they can lead to eye fatigue and dry eyes. In severe cases, blue light has been shown to cause cataracts and age-related macular degeneration (AMD). Check this guide.
In this article, we’ll examine how blue light damages your eyes and then offer some tips on what you should be doing for your own protection.
The human eye contains two types of light-sensitive cells:
Rods help to detect red, green, and blue light, with the color of the light being an important factor in their number. Without rods in your eyes, you could not see colors clearly but would only be able to see black and white images.
Cones are crucial for color vision. With a fresh pair of eyes (the first few days after birth), there are approximately 30 million cones available to work with—this declines with age until by age 60 there are only 10 million cones left. The loss of light-sensitive cells is a natural process, but research has shown that blue light causes this decline to happen up to five times faster.
In order to protect the eyes from blue light exposure, a chemical called melanin (the same chemical that protects skin from the sun) is produced for protection.
Unfortunately, too much exposure can lead to an accelerated decline in melanin production. This not only causes problems for vision but also puts people at risk of developing skin cancer. Vigorously protecting your eyes from blue light requires using the appropriate protection.
The most common sources of blue light are computer screens and televisions. The amount of time we spend in front of a screen has considerably increased in recent years, presenting a serious threat to our eyes.
Television shows, advertisements, and even news broadcasts often use bright blue lights to attract our attention. This is done at the expense of our protective eye melanin since damage due to the lack of melanin can increase by as much as 50 percent when screen time exceeds six hours per day (that’s about fourteen and a half hours per week).
How to Be Safe From Blue Light Omitted From Digital Displays?
All digital screens emit a high-energy shortwave light or blue light. This happens because natural sunlight gives off visible light with a higher concentration of blue wavelengths, which has been found to disrupt sleep patterns and affect moods. It can also damage your eyes in the long run by causing macular degeneration.
Luckily, there are many ways you can reduce blue light exposure from computers and electronic screens at night:
- do not use electronics after sunset
- dim the screen as low as possible
- install apps like f.lux that reduce the amount of blue in your display (make sure to turn it off during daytime hours)
- get an anti-glare filter for your screen, or wear glasses with amber lenses before bedtime.
The blue wavelength of light is what is known as high-energy visible light. The other two colors, red and green, are also high-energy visible lights.
It’s the blue light that has the most potential for damaging your eyes when you’re in an environment where it’s too bright or there isn’t enough natural sunlight on a regular basis like during the winter months.
Wearing sunglasses greatly decreases your risk of developing eye diseases like macular degeneration, cataracts, and age-related macular degeneration (AMD).
Sunglasses with UVA filters can give you added protection from blue wavelengths by blocking them completely and deflecting them away from your eyes.
For extra protection, don’t just look for sunglasses with UV filtering capabilities. Look for a pair of sunglasses that are specifically designed to protect your eyes from blue light.
There are many available. Many people mistakenly think that they’re protected because they wear wraparound glasses or contacts that block UV rays.
They aren’t protected from other causes of blue light damage, like computers and digital screens in general — not just the screens on smartphones, tablets, and computers now but also televisions and video projectors in years to come.