Question & Answer

Do blue-light-blocking glasses make a difference to headaches and eye strain when working on a computer?

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  • Blue light is a part of the light spectrum that the human eye can see. Sunlight is the greatest natural source of blue light. Artificial sources of blue light include fluorescent light, LED TVs, computer monitors, smartphones and tablet screens.
  • Blue light emitted from computer screens has been claimed to cause headaches and eye strain among other symptoms.
  • Computer vision syndrome (CVS) is a combination of eye and vision problems related to computer use. CVS is also referred to as visual fatigue and digital eye strain. Symptoms include visual discomfort, eye strain, eye irritation, dry eyes, headache, shoulder, neck and back pain.
  • Claims have been made that blue-light-blocking glasses reduce the headache, eye strain, and other symptoms of CVS or digital eye strain.
  • Studies have shown that there is little evidence to support the use of blue-light-blocking glasses to reduce headaches and eye strain when working on a computer. But the evidence is of low certainty.

Things to Remember


  • Drafted by: KM Saif-Ur-Rahman, Evidence Synthesis Ireland and Cochrane Ireland, University of Galway
  • Reviewed by: Prof Declan Devane, School of Nursing and Midwifery, HRB-Trials Methodology Research Network, Evidence Synthesis Ireland & Cochrane Ireland, University of Galway.
  • Topic Advisor: Prof Andrew Murphy, College of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences, University of Galway, Health Research Board Primary Care Clinical Trials Network Ireland and General Practitioner principal in a semi-rural setting.
  • Public and patient advisor: Deirdre Mac Loughlin, Public and Patient Involvement in research (PPI) advisor, PPI Ignite, University of Galway.
  • Journalistic advisor: Claire O’Connell, Contributor to The Irish Times, writing about health, science and innovation