No one ever claimed that getting older would be fun. And while the many technological…
As our bodies continue to age, it is understandable that we begin to experience more changes. And whether we like it or not, doctors and other medical specialists are here to help us make sure that our bodies are operating at the very best levels that they can and when they are not, doctors are the people we visit to find out why.
For example, declining eyesight is one of the most common and most easily diagnosable issues our bodies may encounter throughout our lives. Worsening eyesight is often associated with getting older and while there are a variety of reasons and levels of severity, ultimately poor eyesight is typically very treatable except in certain circumstances.
As a general rule of thumb, it is suggested that you should visit the eye doctor once every one to two years. Even if you don’t feel your eyesight has changed, an optometrist will be able to know for sure and make any adjustments to your eye prescription as necessary.
The Introduction Of Blue Blocker Lenses
If your eyesight has changed over the past five years and you have needed to purchase new eyeglass lenses, you may have been asked if you were interested in adding Blue Blocker Lens Protection. This is something you may have never heard of before.
Blue Blocker lenses have been designed to filter out blue light. Older examples of these lenses may have appeared to have a yellow tint, but newer blue light-blocking lenses look like all other lenses types with little to no color difference. But what is this blue light and why should you pay extra to block it?
Blue light is not a new phenomenon though our recent levels of prolonged exposure to them certainly is. Blue light occurs naturally in nature and is partially responsible for helping to keep our circadian rhythms (sleep cycles) normal. The problem is that over the past few decades our exposure to non-natural blue-light producing objects has dramatically increased through our increased exposure to certain manmade lighting, television screens, computer monitors, laptops, and a myriad of other smart devices.
You may have heard that too much screen time can be bad for your health, but what happens when prolonged exposure to our various everyday screens is unavoidable?
Blue Blocker Lenses For The Modern World
According to a 2016 Nielson Company audience report, it is estimated that every day adults in the United States consume nearly 11 hours of media. For many American workers, their very jobs dictate that they must spend at least seven hours in front of their computer screens alone. Free time out or at home often includes watching tv, movies, or even the news, while periodically checking our smart devices for even more content.
As a result, recent studies have indicated a correlation between an increase in diagnosed cases of Myopia (shortsightedness) among individuals who spend increased amounts of time in front of a screen— most notably, the Millennial generation.
Blue blocker lenses have been designed to help us better take care of our eyes in the modern world, but are they really all they’re cracked up to be?
The truth is that for the most part, the science is too new and experts disagree on whether these lenses can improve overall eye health. One aspect of our daily lives that blue light-blocking lenses do appear to help with is regulating our sleep cycles.
According to a 2018 article from the Strategist, author Maxine Builder writes “In a perfect world, you’d start to avoid blue-enriched light from screens four hours before bedtime. ‘That is hard for a lot of people to swallow,’ admits Goldstein, ‘so we do sometimes recommend blue light-blocking glasses at that time.’ And there’s a growing body of research to back up the claim that blocking blue light before bed can help you sleep better. In one study, from 2009, volunteers who wore blue-light-blocking glasses three hours before bedtime reported better sleep quality and mood than those who didn’t. A more recent study of teenage boys found similar results.”
Protecting Your Vision Health
When was the last time you visited an optometrist? For those without perfect vision, it is recommended that one visit the eye doctor once every twelve months to look for any adjustments that may be needed to your eye prescription.
Have you noticed an increase in difficulty falling asleep and find it hard to pry your eyes from blue-lit screens, or your eyes feel strained after a long day at your desk? Do you find yourself needing to squint to try to see distant objects or read things up close? Do you often experience headaches, blink, or rub your eyes frequently?
If so, it may be time to visit your eye doctor and assess your overall vision health.
Got Dental and Vision Insurance? Members of the APA can secure dental and vision insurance coverage for themselves and their family. Visit www.apa.memberbenefits.com/dentalvision/ to learn more about what our Dental and Vision insurance can do for you!