Sometimes, it’s hard to get a full night of restful sleep. When we don’t, we pay for it the next day. But did you know that sleep not only affects the quality of your alertness but your vision, too?
Sleep deprivation symptoms include a weakened immune system, high blood pressure, memory issues, mood changes, weight gain, and vision problems. Vision symptoms of sleep deprivation include twitchy eyelids, dry eye, and eye strain. For our eyes to perform to their best ability throughout the day, they must get at least five hours of sleep per night.
Tablets, smartphones, laptops, etc., all put out every optometrists’ worst enemy, blue light. Your eyes become very confused when exposed to blue light at night. The only blue light our eyes are exposed to in nature is the sun, so exposed during the night, our eyes think it’s daytime and that we should be awake. Our brains then also become confused, making it much harder to not only fall asleep but get restful sleep.
Looking at bright screens in the dark also increases your chance of developing digital eye strain. Symptoms include, sore, tired, burning and itchy eyes, watery or dry eyes, blurred or double vision, headaches, sore neck, shoulders or back, increased sensitivity to light, and difficulty concentrating.
Taking your contacts out before you go to sleep is vital. Our eyes get oxygen directly from the air and while wearing contacts, they block air from reaching our eyes, especially during hours of sleep when our eyes are completely closed. Newer contact lenses allow more oxygen to flow, but taking them out before going to sleep is always the overall better choice to wake up with no irritation.
Wishing restful sleep to all and to all a good night!