The Truth About F.lux and Blue Light Exposure
Do you have f.lux installed on your computer?
F.lux is a free blue light exposure protection app you can install on your desktop to filter out the blue light from your monitor. The app automatically shifts the color to a reddish amber as soon as the sun goes down.
Night Shift is another great blue light filter app option you can try out on your smartphone or tablet.
Blue light exposure problem solved! Right?
Let’s find out the truth about the effectiveness of these blue light filter apps, and what you can do to solve this problem.
The problem with blue light filter apps
We all know the problem with blue light exposure is real. All the blue light from your devices is throwing off your circadian rhythms – a 24-hour internal clock that is running in the background of your brain and cycles between sleepiness and alertness at regular intervals.
Your circadian rhythm works best when you have regular sleep habits, like going to bed at night and waking up in the morning around the same times every day (including weekends).
When things get in the way, like jet lag, daylight savings time, or a compelling show on TV that keeps you up into the wee hours of the morning, you can disrupt your circadian rhythm.
This can be why you feel out of sorts and struggle to focus.
Additionally, lack of sleep can have other very serious health consequences. Research shows that sleep deprivation can increase the risk of these health problems:
- High blood pressure
- Heart disease
Find out how the effects of blue light can increase your risk of cancer here.
As for the blue light filter apps, they don’t work as a proper filter. Their lack of efficiency is due to the fact that they can only reduce the blue light instead of filtering or blocking it.
Why do we need proper filters to protect our eyes from blue light exposure?
Because ALL screens have this problem called backlight bleeding which means your monitor will still “bleed” light from the backlight and around the edges. That excess light isn’t picked up by f.lux, Night Shift or any other blue light apps as they are essentially offering a software solution to a hardware problem.
The problem with f.lux is it can’t eliminate but only reduce blue light exposure. Therefore, your eyes can still get strained when you use these blue light filtering apps.
Unfortunately, that’s not the only problem we’ve identified with blue light filter apps. Blue light is not only released by our smartphones and computers, but also by our TVs and all sources of artificial light. While these apps are certainly a step in the right direction, it definitely falls short to solve the problem completely. In fact, this study indicates that “less than 1 lux of monochromatic light elicited a significant suppression of nocturnal melatonin”.
To reevaluate your lighting strategies is no longer an option but a necessity to ensure maximum health. And this is what excited us the most. We needed a better blue light exposure solution, and thanks to Swanwick Sleep we have one.
Blue Light Exposure Eliminated!
At Swanwick Sleep, we believe sleep is crucial! And our mission is to help you achieve it. We don’t do things by halves. To prove it, we created our Swannies® Blue Light Blocking Glasses to not only filter but block all the blue light in your space.
You can wear your Swannies at night (at least one hour before going to sleep) to protect your eyes from all the blue light in LED emitting street lamps, while watching LED electronic screens, at baseball games, or anywhere blue light exposure can be an issue. There’s increasing scientific evidence that blue light may not just damage your sleep, but your eyes as well. The simple color shift provided by blue light filter apps is not enough to prevent such damage. If you’re already wearing glasses, it might as well be Swannies. That way you’re guaranteed healthy eyes and a good night’s sleep! Win-win!
Here are 10 tips to improve your sleep hygiene. When you sleep better you feel better, right?
That’s not to say your f.lux doesn’t offer any protection from blue light exposure. But if you’re wondering why you still haven’t achieved the peaceful sleep you’re dreaming about, Swannies just may be the answer for you.