Urban Optique
4935 40 Ave NW #132 Calgary AB T3A 2N1 (403) 286-4142

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Calgary, AB


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Do Blue Light Glasses Help with Headaches?

Staring at screens is the new normal. From our phones, to our work computers, to our home televisions, we are looking at screens more than ever. But how much are you thinking about the blue light that electronic screens emit? You might be wondering if it contributes to headaches or maybe whether blue light glasses help with headaches. 

The short answer is blue light glasses can’t help with headaches, but they may help with other effects of blue light exposure from digital screens. There isn’t conclusive evidence to show that wearing blue light eyeglasses reduces your chances of headaches. 

However, there are still things you can do to support your eye health when it comes to screen time. With an eye exam, we can provide advice to help you avoid other conditions that can be caused by screen use, like digital eye strain and dry eyes. 

What Exactly Is Blue Light?

Blue light is a high-energy visible component of the light spectrum that has a shorter wavelength, similar to that of UV (ultraviolet) rays. We absorb blue light from a multitude of sources, including direct sunlight, but screens have become a common source in recent years. 

Blue light isn’t inherently bad—it can be effective in keeping us alert, reducing symptoms of seasonal affective disorder, and aligning our circadian rhythm. On the flip side, too much blue light, especially at night, can disrupt our sleep cycles and stress our eyes, contributing to its bad reputation. However, what we attribute to blue light could actually be symptoms of digital eye strain as well. 

What Is Digital Eye Strain? 

Digital eye strain is a cluster of symptoms that can affect those who use computers for long periods of time, like office workers, writers, graphic designers, or those of us who unwind with screen usage. 

The common symptoms of digital eye strain include: 

  • Blurry vision
  • Double vision
  • Dry eyes
  • Red eyes
  • Irritated eyes
  • Tired eyes
  • Watery eyes
  • Headaches

When we work close-up with screens, we tend to focus for long periods of time, which can lead to eye strain. Headaches make the list of symptoms, yes, but it is important to note that the blue light from your screen might not be the trigger of your headache, although that blue light could be making your headaches feel worse

Light sensitivity is why migraine sufferers sometimes close their windows and seek darkness when experiencing a flare-up. Just as with sunlight and headaches, exposure to brighter light from a screen can make headaches feel worse. 

A dark-haired person sits at a white table with a laptop in front of them. They are pinching their eyes with their forefinger and thumb in pain while holding their glasses in their other hand.

How Do Blue Light Glasses Work?

Blue light glasses work by filtering out blue light and can come in a variety of frames and prescriptions. Blue light filters are often used as an additional coating on glasses and can reduce the amount of blue light rays that reach your retina. 

While there is no direct link between blue light glasses and improvements in headaches or digital eye strain, they could still be beneficial for those who work long hours with a screen. It is important to note that blue light glasses should not replace good screen habits, however, and you should speak to your eye doctor about what they recommend for avoiding eye strain and headaches caused by screen use. 

Tools for Digital Survival

Practicing good screen time habits can help you manage the challenges of digital eye strain. We recommend the following habits: 

  • Adjust your environment: Dim your lights or use lamps rather than overhead lights. Balance your screen’s brightness with your ambient lighting, and consider changing your screen settings to a warmer light tone during the evening hours. 
  • Follow the 20-20-20 rule: For every 20 minutes on your screen, gaze at something about 20 feet away for about 20 seconds. 
  • Use good screen ergonomics: Your monitor should be about an arm’s length away from you, and the top should be at eye level or slightly below with a slight tilt. 

When Should You Get Your Eyes Checked?

If you’ve tried different methods for dealing with eye strain and you still feel discomfort often, the solution might not be blue light glasses but rather other forms of treatment. A visit with an optometrist could help. We can uncover underlying issues that may be contributing to your headaches. 

Some of the other reasons you may be experiencing headaches and eye strain include the following:

  • Your prescription may be out of date
  • You may be experiencing eye alignment issues and other issues with your visual skills
  • You could be experiencing other health conditions, such as an infection or allergies

With an eye exam, we can help you find the cause of your symptoms and guide you toward relief.

The Comprehensive Eye Exam

During a comprehensive eye exam with Urban Optique, we can spot not only vision issues but also signs of more serious health problems. We’ll check your eye movement, focusing abilities, and visual acuity, all of which can correlate to screen usage and eye strain, and make tailored recommendations to help you avoid headaches and see clearly. 

Seeing Beyond Blue Light Glasses

While blue light glasses may not be the definitive solution, they can play a role in today’s digital lifestyle. The key always lies in balance—in being aware of how we use our technology and respecting the fact that our bodies may still need some time to catch up with our gadgets. 

At Urban Optique, we offer comprehensive eye exams to diagnose potential issues, use technology that helps us provide tailored solutions, and provide a variety of frames, lenses, and contacts to help you see clearly and comfortably. 

Contact us today to book an appointment and learn more. 

Our Location

Located on the main floor of the Market Mall professional building. Providing eye exams, in-stock contact lenses and over 2,000 frames from over 40 brands of eyeglasses. Free parking is available for this Northwest Calgary location.


4935 40 Ave NW #132
Calgary AB, T3A 2N1

Contact Information

  • Monday: 9:00am - 6:00pm
  • Tuesday: 9:00am - 9:00pm
  • Wednesday: 9:00am - 9:00pm
  • Thursday: 9:00am - 6:00pm
  • Friday: 9:00am - 6:00pm
  • Saturday: 9:30am - 5:30pm
  • Sunday: Closed
  • Dr. Russ Reisner
  • Dr. David Schmidt
  • Dr. Pri Tawar
  • Dr. Nevin McIvor
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