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TECH SKIN. How the Light And Invisible EMF From Our Screens Causes Damage and Wrinkles
Artificial Blue Light and Your Skin
Research shows the blue light glow that’s coming from the screen we’re bending over to look at, is also affecting that gorgeous face of yours! We all know how sunlight affects our skin—the sunlight spectrum consists of UV, visible and infrared light. So, in the visible part of the spectrum lies the blue/violet band known as HEV.
Although HEV is part of daylight, now that our world is overcome with tablets, smartphones, computers, and an overall abundance of technology, we’re getting much more of it and in much more focused doses.
Not great because research is showing that screen glow contributes to aging and revs up hyper-pigmentation! Thankfully we can do something about it. Start with less time in front of your screens, and follow with a special skin care product designed to fight the onslaught of the blue glow.
Research show’s the blue light glow that’s coming from the screen we’re bending over to look at is also affecting that gorgeous face of yours! We all know how sunlight affects our skin—the sunlight spectrum consists of UV, Visible and infrared light. Part of this spectrum is referred to as HEV. Wikipedia notes this high-energy visible light (HEV light) is high-frequency, high energy light in the violet-blue band from 400 to 450 nm in the visible spectrum.
Even though Blue Light Therapy, which utilizes HEV has been shown to be effective in some skin conditions such as eczema, it has also been shown to contribute to aging and hyperpigmentation in other studies.
Germs aren't good for your looks, either.
Even if you aren't super-worried about getting the stomach flu via your dirty handset, think about your vanity. Now, there are very good health reasons regarding EMF energy to keep your cell phone away from your head and face. Choosing texting or speakerphone is optimal for other reasons though:
You are pressing a germ-laden screen into your cheek and the heat from your phone causes your skin to perspire, squeezing out oil and sweat back onto your phone and causing acne. Women's Health Magazine even thinks this pressing action causes sagging skin on your face. The friction and rubbing activate oil glands, in any case.
Can Blue Light From Phones Can Cause Bacteria Growth too?
In the first study to investigate if exposure to the digital blue light that comes from all of our screens could effect a bacteria known to cause acne- the answer is YES. When Staphylococcus aureus was exposed to short-wavelength visible light emitted from smartphones and tablets there was an increase the proliferation of the bacteria.
The researchers noted that the greatest effect was at about 4 hours of exposure. Does anyone text or stare at the screen that long?
Here's the good news about EMF and Blue Light and Exposure
They both heed our Tech Wellness Mantra: Distance Is Your Friend. As you get further from the source of light waves or radio waves the amount of exposure you receive lessens proportionally.
It's called the Inverse Square Law: The intensity of a force is inversely proportional to the square of the distance from that force.
Practically speaking: Your face or any part of your body holding the phone or glued right up to next to it, is getting the heaviest dose of exposure. Keep it out of your hands anytime you can and a good 12" away from your face and eyes is a good rule of thumb for "safer" exposure levels.
Blue Light and Aging, Wrinkles and Oxadative Stress
Here's what skin aging research scientists said in the latest study.
Exposure to light emitted from electronic devices on human skin cells, even in case of short exposures, can increase the generation of reactive oxygen species. Skin is a major target of oxidative stress and the link between aging and oxidative stress is well documented. Especially, extrinsic skin aging can be caused by oxidative stress.
Not great because we now receive much more exposure over all from our abundance of screens and and in focused doses from tablets, smartphones and computers.
Thankfully we can do something about it. Start with less time in front of your screens, and follow with a special skin care product designed to fight the onslaught of the blue glow.
Science Studies EMF Exposure and Skin
Researchers reviewed six studies over the 7 years to see if they could correlate damage from the invisible electromagnetic radiation and our skin. EMF of course, is the man made information carrying radio waves that power up and spew without smell and invisibly, all our wireless devices. Smartphones, Bluetooth Speakers, the WiFi our laptops, the list goes on and on.
After lots of intense reflection they came to this conclusion:
We found that the use of mobile phones was associated with a mildly increased risk of skin problems. This is the first systematic review on the effects of mobile phone radiation on skin diseases.
As they point out, this is the first review on just what phones and smart devices could be doing do our skin so we think it's cause to employ our favorite strategy: The precautionary principle (or precautionary approach) Precaution basically means "caution in advance," "caution practiced in the context of uncertainty," or informed prudence- or some would say, just common sense.
Some of the studies they looked at showed that collagen tissue increased in cells exposed to mobile radiation. Mobile phone radiation for one hour causes morphological changes and increased fibroblast activity of the skin. Another study also found that exposure to 900 MHz mobile phone radiation creates exocytosis in skin cells.
They pointed out that some of the studies noticed "the degree of destruction caused by mobile radiation is related to the duration of exposure to radiation" Yep. That would make sense, the less the better with something that could cause destruction . . .
They also noted, in addition to some of the studies showing nothing to worry about at all--that, "As worldwide rates of mobile phone users rise, . . . mobile phone-associated contact dermatitis is increasing.
The scientists concluded by recommending more studies on the specific of effect of EMF on skin.
So here's how I deal with Screens and Digital blue light in my daily life. I've re-set my circadian rhythm so that I automatically wake (without an alarm clock) every morning at 7:15. I try to get an hour of natural light sometime throughout the day. I use an Ocushield screen protector: I like that it protects my skin, my eyes from strain and also from a bit of screen blue light. Then, after 4:00 in the winter and 6:00 PM in the summer, I'll grab orange glasses when I look at a screen. Later in the evening, watching TV or scrolling, I LOVE my dark espresso glasses. They make my eyes feel so relaxed.
Throughout the day, I exercise the healthy screen habits my optometrist shared with me as I discussed the Tech Wellness balance-with-technology mission.
- My computer monitor is nice and big and is about 2 feet from my eyes and is positioned so that when I look straight ahead--the top of the monitor is even with my eyes.
- The monitor is angled back very slightly because if I gaze down just 15 degrees my eye muscles are more relaxed.
- I'm all about the 20-20-2 minute rule. Every twenty minutes I take my eyes off the screen and look 20 feet away for 2 minutes--experts say just 20 seconds of looking away is all that's needed to reduce eye strain--but I like to treat myself and think of 2 things I'm thankful for (right now, I'm thankful that you're here).
- I make it a point to adjust my computer screen brightness to the brightness of the light in the room. I LOVE natural light and always turn off any fluorescent lights I see, but even LED's or nice halogen lights can be annoying and make it hard for my eyes to adjust to the screen. I have a beautiful view of an adorable downtown street out my office window, however, when the sun goes down and I stare right at the glare just past my computer, then it's time for glasses or time to call it a day.
Effects of UVA, visible light, and infrared radiation on erythema and pigmentation: http://pubs.rsc.org/en/content/articlelanding/2013/pp/c2pp25152c/unauth#!divAbstract.
ffects of blue light irradiation on human dermal fibroblasts https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1011134411000698
(Hyperpigmentation from UVB light from our Screens): Differences in visible light-induced pigmentation according to wavelengths: a clinical and histological study in comparison with UVB exposure - https://pdfs.semanticscholar.org/5a59/59da7b602d54df35ef02c531aea0a96a06a7.pdf
EMF Exposure Increase E. coli and and Glucose implications
EMF Exposure decrease Probiotic cultures
Study of Thyroid Gland After Exposure to Magnetic EMF in Adult Male Rats -https://www.omicsonline.org/open-access/histological-study-of-thyroid-gland-after-experimental-exposure-to-lowfrequency-electromagnetic-fields-in-adult-male-albino-rat-and-possibleprotective-role-of-vitamin-e-2157-7099-1000374.php?aid=62839
EMF exposures to rats showed changes in behavior and an increase in stress hormones - https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4256039/