As a society, we are spending more time looking at computer screen in the form of monitors, tablets and smartphones than ever before. While long hours spent looking at screens can cause eye strain, this is related to decreased blinking which is associated with dry eyes. There is no evidence that the type or amount of light coming from the screens causes any permanent damage to the eyes.
Companies selling glasses that filter out the blue light from computers claim that overexposure to blue light causes disruption of the sleep-wake cycle, dry eyes and macular degeneration. Exposure to ultraviolet light from the sun is associated with cataract formation and other eye diseases. However, no measurable UVA or UVB radiation is emitted from computer monitors, tablets or smartphones. Special glasses are therefore not necessary.
Some simple measures are recommended to reduce eyestrain. The simplest is to look away from the computer every 20 minutes and to gaze far away (eg out of a window or down a long corridor). This will relieve the prolonged focusing. Further, when the eyes feel dry use artificial tears to moisten them.
Source: AAO EyeSmart
Michelle Akler, MD
Akler Eye Center
Sterling Heights & Dearborn