Does my smartphone blind me?

Blue-wave light triggers a self-destructive mechanism in the eye – and thus promotes the development of age-related macular degeneration. In a recent study, US researchers come to this conclusion. Blue-light causes damage to the eyes, as previous studies have already shown. An experiment with rats, for example, showed that the light from smartphones and laptops can kill visual cells – but the reason for this was not yet known. Scientists from the University of Toledo in the US state of Ohio in their current study went in search of the cause for the eye-damaging effect of blue lightwaves – and they came up with something: The key to the problem is apparently in a molecule called Retinal. This molecule sits in the sticks – the sensors in the eye responsible for perceiving light-dark contrasts. Retinal, when light hits the retina, causes a signal to be sent to the brain. Blue light "manipulates" Retinal
As the team from Toledo found out in lab experiments, blue-light retinal light is "off the right path": if the light of a smartphone strikes the retina, the molecule produces toxic compounds that destroy the visual cell. Unfortunately, the eye has a protective mechanism against them " Sabotage ": The researchers found that a molecule called alpha-tocopherol protects the photoreceptor cells from death by the blue light. However, this self-protection seems to be less and less effective with advancing age – so blue-wave light could promote the development of age-related macular degeneration (MD) from the point of view of US scientists in old age. In this disease, the massive death of retinal cells can lead to near complete blindness. How can I protect myself?
Does this mean that the numbers of people with AMD will increase dramatically in the following decades? Of course, the study can not predict that – yet the researchers recommend moderation when dealing with devices that emit blue light. A good way to protect your eyes from blue light is a blue light filter for the smartphone. For some devices this is already part of the basic configuration – if this is not the case, it can be installed by free apps. Source:
Ratnayake, Kasun, et al. (2018): Blue light excited retinal intercepts cellular signaling, in: Scientific reports.

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