Blue LED Light Dangers

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Intense blue light can permanently damage the human eye.
Intense blue light can permanently damage the human eye. (Image: eye image by Stanisa Martinovic from Fotolia.com)

Although the retina of the human eye has many built-in defenses against damaging light, such as protective chemicals, a risk of permanent damage exists from exposure to blue LED light.

Identification

Light emitting diode, or LED, is electrical energy emitted as light. It is the type of light seen on a digital clock, the display window of a DVD player and even the numbers on a microwave oven. Almost every electronic item that must display letters or numbers uses LEDs.

Harmful Effects

The retina of the human eye does not handle blue light well. Doctor Sliney of the US Army Center for Health Promotion and Preventive Medicine in Maryland states that blue light sends an extremely intense signal to the muscles of the eye telling them to shut down. This can cause severe headaches and nausea. Intense blue light is also capable of causing permanent photochemical damage to the eye.

Prevention/Solution

According to the Macular Degeneration Support Foundation, various chemicals in the eye such as xanthophyll, catalase and melanin guard against harmful blue LED light damage. The lens of the eye takes on a yellowish hue as the body ages, which also counteracts these harmful effects. However, since these defenses can weaken over time, the best course of action is to avoid exposure in the first place.

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