Luzerne Optical’s new TheraBlue lens allows only beneficial blue light to reach the eye.
Just as all cholesterol isn’t bad for you, all blue light isn’t harmful to the eyes, either. In fact, some of it is healthy. Understanding this, Luzerne Optical Laboratories, Ltd. now produces a lens that differentiates between good and bad blue light and only stops the harmful type from reaching the eye.
BLUE LIGHT BASICS
Some studies show that high-energy visible (HEV), or blue, light can be a cause of age-related macular degeneration (AMD), as photoreceptors in the eye absorb this light, leading to retinal damage over time. Blue light is also emitted by televisions and digital screens (such as those on smartphones, tablets, and computers), which trick the body’s circadian rhythms, thereby disrupting sleep habits.
In recent years, lens manufacturers have created lens coatings or put additives into their lenses to mitigate the eye’s exposure to blue light. This works wonderfully-if you don’t mind wearing yellow or orange lenses, or virtually clear AR lenses that flash blue or purple tints when reflecting light. But the light at the blue-turquoise end of the HEV spectrum is actually therapeutic, helping to regulate sleep cycles and wakefulness. This creates a problem: When protecting against bad blue light, must we always throw the baby out with the bathwater?
A BRIGHT SOLUTION
Luzerne offers a solution with the company’s new TheraBlue lenses, which absorb and filter up to 90% of harmful blue-violet light from the blue-light spectrum while allowing beneficial, blue-turquoise light to reach the eye.
Unlike lenses that are coated to protect against blue light, the material used in TheraBlue lenses absorbs HEV light itself, making it easy to apply AR treatments to them. As a result, these lenses are mostly clear, with no odd lens colors or reflective tints. Available in 1.67, 1.60, and 1.56 materials, these lenses can be surfaced in single vision, progressive, or digital round segment (back-surface) bifocal designs.
With TheraBlue lenses, your patients can now keep the good blue light while eliminating the bad (and the ugly).
UNDERSTANDING CIRCADIAN RHYTHMS
A 1981 Harvard Medical School study by Dr. Charles Czeisler illustrated that daylight sets the body’s internal clock, which regulates circadian rhythms. Exposure to artificial light, especially the blue light emitted by digital screens and modern light bulbs, can have an adverse effect on circadian rhythms. While exposure to all light is responsible for suppressing the brain’s production of melatonin (the hormone used to regulate circadian rhythms), none succeeds more than blue light.Minimizing exposure to this light at nighttime improves sleep and overall health.
Kevin Harrison is president and owner of Heritage Vision Center, an independent optical dispensary in Hattiesburg, MS.
Luzerne Optical Laboratories, Ltd. 800.233.9637 // luzerneoptical.com