Sunlight, or white light, is made up of red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo and violet light rays combined. Each light wave has a different wavelength and with them different shades, energy levels and undertones (either warm or cold). The earth’s atmosphere already filters most of the harmful rays the sun sends towards us; however, there is no filter for visible light, the light we use to see our surroundings and regulate our circadian rhythms (sleep cycles).
Blue light makes up approximately 1/3 of visible light, has the shortest wavelength and carries a high level of energy. It is close to ultraviolet radiation, which is why it is also referred to as blue-violet light or violet light.
Exposure and Health Concerns
As blue light is produced by the sun, we are under constant exposure to it both outdoors and indoors. In addition to sunlight, we are also highly exposed to blue light from many devices such as smart phones, computers and tablets. Manufacturers utilize blue light because it is a cool color that has a calming effect on people. This creates an environment conducive to work or study. Blue light also has the ability to help regulate our circadian rhythm, which in turn enables good sleep and thereby boosts productivity.
However, continuous and long exposure to blue light at night hinders the secretion of melatonin, causing the opposite effect: interrupting sleep and fatigue. This has become a major source of concern for many health and education experts, as humans spend more and more time glued to laptops, mobile phones, tablets and TV screens, and start at a very young age. Today, we use screens in most areas of our lives, from studying and working, to cooking, playing, entertainment, shopping and socializing. All these hours exposed to blue light guarantee over exposure, which is an overall concern, but more significantly a concern for our eyes.