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Wearable Technology: Can You Hurt Your Vision?

We live in a world full of constantly changing and evolving technology. One of the latest trends in tech is wearable technologies, such as Google Glass, smart watches or fitness trackers. In the past, most of these technologies were created for professional and industrial use, but these new types of devices are also being incorporated into daily life and used by general consumers.

With wearable devices like Google Glass, users have access to a mini computer everywhere they go thanks to a small screen integrated into the lens. This allows users to take pictures, watch videos, get directions and even browse the internet. While all of this makes life much more interactive, it can also lead to a few risks.

Our body is already exposed to some radiation when we use electronic devices like cell phones, laptops, and tablets. When a wireless device is worn on the body all day long, however, the exposure becomes even greater and can potentially create health problems.

According to Joel M. Moskowitz, Ph.D., director of the Center for Family and Community Health at the UC Berkeley Prevention Research Center School of Public Health, exposure to radiation from Wi-Fi can cause serious effects on the body because it “opens the blood brain barrier. So if you have any toxins in your blood system, those toxins can now penetrate your brain tissue with very, very low exposure microwave radiation.”

Smart glasses also present another issue. The brain is used to both eyes seeing the same thing and can easily adjust to that vision. With the use of smart glasses, a person’s vision is different for each eye, so the eye viewing the screen has to manage viewing two different perspectives. This can lead to several vision problems including visual interferencephoria and binocular rivalry.

Another issue with wearable technology is linked to the blue light emitted by the screens of electronic devices.  Blue light can be dangerous for the eyes and lead to vision problems. Having this little screen right in front of your eye is even more dangerous. However, some measures can be taken to reduce the amount of harmful blue light that reaches the eye. For example, Crizal Prevencia lenses selectively filter out the harmful blue light.

While wearable technologies are convenient, they can be hazardous to your health. It is recommended to occasionally use them and not wear them all day long.  If you do choose to use this type of technology, visit your eye doctor if you experience any signs of eye strain or headaches.