Phone Screens Can Kill Eyes


If you’re reading this story on your phone…well, we don’t have such good news for you.

Researchers from Ohio’s University of Toledo discovered how blue light from digital devices can wreck retinal cells over time and causes macular degeneration, a major cause of blindness that affects over two million Americans annually.

It works like this: retinal photoreceptor cells need a constant supply of molecules called retinal to sense light. Ironically, however, blue light causes the important retinal molecules to trigger reactions that dissolve the photoreceptor membranes and kill them for good.

The body shields against this with the alpha tocopherol molecule, naturally present in the eye and body. But as a person ages or the immune system is suppressed, people lose this ability to fight against retinal and blue light.

Some cell phone companies are adding blue-light filters to their screens.

The Toledo researchers advise to wear sunglasses that filter UV and natural blue light and to avoid looking at cell phones or tablets in dark environments.



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