From the rapid decline in global consumer spending for retail, travel, and service-oriented businesses, to the spike in Dalgona coffee, K-dramas, and grocery delivery Google searches and video conference app downloads over the last three months, it’s evident that the COVID-19 pandemic has drastically changed how—and where—we live our lives today.
Despite this being the digital age, the implementation of lockdowns and quarantines in cities all over the world has forced us to become even more dependent on technology than usual. And with almost everything we need readily available online, that means our eyes are always glued to our devices—the same devices we use for both work and play. In a study made by social media management platform Hootsuite and media company We Are Social last year, the Philippines ranked highest for time spent online daily. While the worldwide average was only 6 hours and 42 minutes per day, Filipinos clocked in with an average of 10 hours and 2 minutes. Here are more figures from the study to give you a better idea of how many of us spend that much time in the virtual world:
Now, with most areas nationwide still under quarantine after almost three months, just imagine how much those statistics have increased! In March 2020 alone, videoconferencing apps exceeded over 62 million downloads, popular social media app Tiktok reached 2 billion downloads, Netflix gained almost 16 million subscribers, and the global spending on digital games rose to up to 10 billion USD.
All this time we continue to spend in front of our TVs, smartphones, computers, and gaming devices means we risk overexposure to the damaging effects of blue light. But what exactly is blue light, anyway?
Blue light is a color in the visible light spectrum that can be seen by the human eye. It is among the shortest, highest-energy wavelengths in the spectrum, so it tends to flicker a lot more than the longer wavelengths. It’s this flickering that affects our eyesight, often reducing its sharpness and clarity. While some exposure to this so-called blue light is essential to help regulate our natural sleeping and waking cycles and to boost alertness, memory, and mood, too much of it is also detrimental to our health.
The health issues that overexposure to blue light can bring about include headaches, blurred vision, neck and shoulder pain, sleep disorders, dry eyes, and of course, the inevitable eye strain. And while there are quick fixes such as the 20-20-20 rule (that is, looking at something about 20 feet away from you for about 20 seconds for every 20 minutes of screen time) or adjusting your devices’ display settings, actual protection is key given that exposure to blue light is simply unavoidable.
With our day-to-day activities becoming more and more contingent on technology and devices, and our eyes, therefore, becoming more and more susceptible to damage, it’s best to invest in lenses that work extra hard to protect them. Think long term and opt for lenses that both filter out blue light and protect the lutein in your eyes. This way, you not only prevent eye strain, body pain, or headaches, but you also get to safeguard your eyes from more permanent damage such as cataract, macular degeneration (i.e. the leading cause of severe, permanent loss of vision), or blindness.
Vision Express lets you upgrade your preferred pair of eyeglasses to blue-light-blocking lenses for only P2000. Harder working than your ordinary screen lenses, Vision Express’ Blue Light Shield Lenses are the highest grade lenses in the market today. They are Lutina lenses by Japan’s very own Tokai Optical, and they block 94% of high energy violet light to help preserve eye health. You can choose from Ray-Ban, Burberry, Emporio Armani, or our house brand Tony Morgan London and get the digital protection you need today via www.vex.com.ph.