Using a smartphone or PC at night to surf the Internet is a normal practice these days – whether it is for work, social, or personal interest purposes.
Unfortunately for smart device users, staring at an LED screen once the sun has gone down is not good for your brain or your eyes, according to a report by Vox.
The Vision Council estimates that about a third of people who are between 20 and 55-years-old spend at least 9 hours a day on a digital device.
Those under 20 with access to a PC or smartphone are estimated to spend even more time than that online.
According to the Council, the blue light LEDs emit can damage retinal cells if you are constantly exposed to it for prolonged periods of time.
Keeping your brain awake
The report stated that the blue light also sends signals to your brain that it’s daytime, causing your heart rate and level of alertness to rise.
Besides keeping you awake when your body needs to sleep, exposure to blue light at night has been linked to: cancer, diabetes, heart disease, and obesity.
Can I still use my PC at night?
According to the report, there are solutions to the blue light problem.
Not looking at a PC or smartphone screen a couple hours before bed is not possible for everyone, and hardware makers know this – developing screen protectors that filter blue light.
Glasses made to eliminate the harmful light are also available, along with an app called f.lux.
Vox said f.lux is free for Windows and Mac, and adjusts the light from your screen according to the time of day – eliminating blue light in the evening.