Blue light blocking glasses to encourage restful SLEEP
I quickly realised soon after my diagnosis that good quality, restful sleep for at least 8-10 hours was so beneficial for my symptoms and quality of life. A bad nights sleep for me will cause balance issues, a flat mood, my nystagmus and cognition worsen and I feel overly emotional which is all incredibly frustrating.
Going from relatively normal one-day and feeling on top of things to struggling to walk in a straight line, bumping into walls, unable to see properly and loosing my train of thought or the ability to explain something is not a great feeling. Back when I was much sicker during the first 18 months of healing a bad nights sleep would write me off for the day and I'd be forced to do nothing but rest. Now that I'm much better it threatens a happy and functional day at work where basic tasks become challenging or I have to call in sick.
One of the biggest traps for me that almost guarantees a restless nights sleep is scrolling my phone or using the computer in the hours before sleep. After some really terrible sleeps and days suffering the consequences, I put a ban on using my phone in the evenings. I do no phones or computers after 7pm. I also created my own evening ritual to wind down and de-stress in an effort to promote the most restful nights sleep I could. Sleep quite quickly became priority number 1.
So when I started seeing these blue light blocking glasses called "Swannies" on social media and hearing about how great they are on podcasts, I thought this would be a great for me to use to help improve my sleep and quality of life, which they have done, but they've also come with some other surprising benefits. So I thought I'd share my experience with you so far incase Swannies might be something your interested in too.
A little background...
Here's a quick intro by the founder James Swanwick explaining why he created them and how they help us.
My experience so far...
enter the golden realm
When you first put these on everything glows a lovely golden light due to the orange tinted lenses. It did take a little bit of getting use to but eventually they become quite addictive. You realise when you take them off just how much blue light your surrounded by. Then you put them back on it's almost like a soothing effect, my body calms down and everything glows.
they ease eye strain
The lenses are super clear and they clarify everything, which eases the strain on my eyes. This is a saviour as I'm currently healing nystagmus which is persistent vertical flickering eye movements, so these really help sharpen things for me especially at work when I need to be as efficient as possible. I also have a pterygium which is a small little lesion on my eyeball from UV light exposure, this tends to get inflamed and sore when I stare at a computer screen or my phone for too long and I'm left bathing it in a cold flannel to help calm it down. I haven't had a flare in my ptyrigium at all since using these.
I crave them
I have down lighting behind my computer and my desk at work, which is also in the middle of a big office with very little natural light, and I tend to get quite photo sensitive - great combination!. I forgot to take my Swannies to work one day and by the afternoon I was finding it hard to cope looking at my screen with all the artificial lighting around me - I was so annoyed I'd forgotten them. When I have my Swannies I notice they take the pressure and glare off my eyes and help me get through afternoons on my computer, I can work comfortably on my computer for longer periods of time. However, if your working with colours as I occasionally do, you do need to whip them off because of the tinted lenses.
people become fascinated by them
My colleagues were all intrigued - what is Simonne wearing!!, in-fact anyone that sees me in them kinda looks at me for a little longer then normal. Once I told them about the health benefits of wearing blue light blocking glasses they were asking to try them on, loved the feeling of wearing them and the golden lenses and saying they wanted a pair too, even my boss!
great for unwinding in the evenings & more restful, quality sleep
They've become part of my evening wind down ritual now. I love to do a few simple things like having a hot shower and taking a magnesium supplement a few hours before sleep, diffusing calming essential oils like lavender or any sleep blends, lighting my Himalayan salt lamps, dimming the lights, popping my Swannies on while I prepare dinner and wearing them all night till I turn my lamp off to go to sleep. I also avoid backlit screens by turning my phone off by 7pm and meditate directly before sleep. This combination will almost guarantee a blissful nights sleep every single time. I did this last night and slept 10hrs, no tossing or turning, super restful and healing and I feel so great for it. Wearing them in the evening is great as that way if I have to look at my phone my eyes and sleep are protected. I also watch TV in them, after a while you naturally want to put them on and forget your wearing them.
I love them and will definitely keep using them daily from now on, especially at work. They've become just as important to me now as carrying my regular sunglasses. What I love most is that they ease the strain on my eyes which has been a saviour for my suffering eyes. I didn't actually realise how much I was straining my eyes by looking at small screens like my phone and laptop until I started using Swannies, but now I can definitely feel the difference.
I've linked the website where I got mine below for you - let me know if you get a pair I'd love to hear how you find them!