Blue light has been implicated in a myriad of problems involving our eyes due to the overuse of our various digital devices. The blue light emitted from devices like laptops and smartphones can cause eye strain and lead to future eye-related issues. Blue light also inhibits the production of melatonin in your body, a chemical that your brain produces in preparation for sleep. The result is that you’ll remain wide awake while you are just about to go to sleep and inevitably mess up your sleep cycle. Unfortunately, that’s not all. Excessive exposure to blue light may also cause weight gain, depression, cancer and heart disease. In this article, we will explore how to filter blue light on a laptop.
However, in this day and age, simply turning off your various gadgets at night or just completely avoiding them isn’t really an option anymore. Be it working, browsing, chatting or watching a movie, there’s always a reason to keep on using your laptop. But that really doesn’t mean nothing can be done. On the contrary, there are a number of ways you can enjoy the utility of your laptop while still protecting your eyes by filtering out the blue light.
Here are our top tips on how to filter blue light on a laptop...
Installing Blue Light Filtering Software
There are a number of different applications you can use for your laptop that can directly regulate the amount of blue light emitted. These apps do this by eliminating the blue spectrum, changing the colour output on the screen to warmer colours (yellows, orange, and reds). They are very effective and users often report an immediate sensation of a decrease in eye strain after activating the blue light filter.
These applications are easily available and practically free, making them the most convenient solution on how to filter blue light on a laptop.
You will initially be thrown off by the change of the screen colour to warmer tones but your eyes quickly adjust and you hardly notice it anymore. There are numerous applications that are effective but we’ll focus on the inbuilt versions that now come with MacOs and Windows 10:
Night Shift on macOS
Apple finally added Night Shift to their computers with the macOS Sierra 10.12.4 update that happened in March 2017. The app is easy to use and can be configured to suit your taste. All you have to do is open System Preferences and click on Displays, then select the Night Shift tab and you’re done You can then set Night Shift to start and end automatically by selecting specific hours or just set the schedule to ‘Sunset to Sunrise’. This settings page also allows you to set the colour temperature just how you like it by sliding the control towards ‘less warm’ for more blue light or ‘warmer’ for less blue light.
Night Light in Windows 10
Microsoft included its blue light filter soon after Apple in the Windows 10 Creator update that was released in April 2017. This feature was dubbed ‘Night Light’ and works just like Night Shift to reduce the amount of blue light emitted by the screen. To access this feature, just click on the Settings icon from the Start menu then select System. In the resulting menu, click on Display. Night Light can then be toggled on and off.
You can configure your preferred settings by clicking on Night light settings. The options provided are pretty similar to those in Apple. You can adjust the colour temperature of the screen and set your desired schedule. Use of blue light filtering screen protectors
Another way you can filter out the blue light is by using physical blue light filters that also double as screen protectors. These are very effective, with some such as the Ocushield blocking the spike blue light wavelengths being emitted by your laptop. Also, since the screen protector is a relatively permanent fixture on your laptop, it provides consistent protection without you having to manually switch it on and off as is the case in many blue light filter apps.
For users of blue light filtering software, there’s a distortion in colour perception that comes with the screen acquiring a yellow or red tint. While this is practically a given when using software, screen protectors like those at Ocushield protect you from harmful blue light but leave the picture unaltered. You can therefore view images on your screen with little or no distortion, completely evading one of the major downsides of blue light filters. All this and yet you get to enjoy the extra protection from crack and scratches that naturally comes with screen protectors.
Using blue light filtering eyewear
Protective eyewear is yet another way you can deal with harmful blue light. These are protective ophthalmic lenses that have a special coating designed to block and reflect high energy blue light. These options can be explored by visiting a local optometrist. The blue spectrum of light is therefore cut while allowing the rest to pass through unhindered. Thanks to the blue light filter coating, such lenses are able to provide adequate protection when using your laptop in dim lighting or at night. Tinted lenses are another option to consider as they reduce harmful blue and violet light emitted by digital devices. It’s important to consider that blue light doesn’t only come from our various devices.
The harsh fluorescent lighting that is ubiquitous in every household is a major source of blue light at night. These lenses will not only protect your eyes from blue light emitted by screens of your devices but also every other source. This will guarantee maximum protection since nothing harmful will even reach your eye. If you do want to visit your opticians, Ocushield blue blocking glasses are available without any prescription as well as clip-on anti-blue light glasses. So don’t hesitate to try out the method you find suitable and take the first step in securing the future health of your eyes.
How we reviewed this article:
Ocushield has strict sourcing guidelines and relies on peer-reviewed studies, academic research institutions, and medical associations.
Our experts continually monitor the health and wellness space, and we update our articles when new information becomes available.