Blue light’s rap sheet is growing ever longer. Researchers have connected the high-energy visible light, which emanates from both the sun and your cell phone (and just about every other digital device in our hands and on our bedside tables), to disruptions in the body’s circadian rhythms. And physicians have drawn attention to the relationship between our favourite devices and eye problems, ranging from everyday eye strain to glaucoma to macular degeneration.
Humans can see a thin spectrum of light, ranging from red to violet. Shorter wavelengths appear blue, while the longer ones appear red. What appears as white light, whether it's from sunlight or screen time, actually includes almost every colour in the spectrum. In a recent paper published in the journal Scientific Reports,researchers at the University of Toledo have begun to parse the process by which close or prolonged exposure to the 445-nanometer shortwave called "blue light" can trigger damage irreversible damage in eye cells. The results could have profound consequences for consumer technology.