People who are suffering from light sensitivity need to have a place where they get relief from extra light and glare. Home should be a haven for them where the sun or bright indoor light can be avoided. There are four home changes that can cut down on extra light and glare. Light sensitivity or photophobia has many causes, including physical conditions, mental health conditions, and medications.
1. The First Home Change to Help Those With Light Sensitivity
People with light sensitivity can help their condition and get comfort by using the correct window treatments in their home. Cover the windows with blinds, shades, or shutters to keep outside light out. Companies such as Vineyard Blind & Shutter will provide free in-home window covering estimates for different types of window coverings that block outdoor light.
Window treatment companies often have sales representatives who are trained to help customers choose the correct window coverings for their needs and then measure for the perfect fit. It is important for window coverings to fit perfectly to keep the maximum amount of light out of the home. They can be inside mounted within the window or outside mounted to cover the window opening and its molding.
Window shades and blinds come in different fabrics providing differing amounts of room darkening, including everything from translucent to blackout. Once the outside light is controlled, the homeowner can control the inside lighting to a comfortable level. It is important to fully open or fully close these window coverings to avoid setting up scattered light patterns.
2. Limit Exposure to Blue Light
Make efforts to reduce blue light exposure from electronic devices. This blue light can increase light sensitivity and impact a person’s sleep cycle.
3. Install Dimmer Switches on All Lights
Invest in dimmer switches for all house light fixtures. Replace harsh light bulbs with warmer LED light bulbs. Get rid of fluorescent light fixtures and bulbs. They have an invisible flicker and too much blue light. Task lights for reading help. It is important to have adequate light for tasks and reading so you do not get eye strain.
4. Invest in Special Sunglasses
Get sunglasses designed for light-sensitive people. Have one pair for outdoor use and a different pair for indoor use. Indoor use sunglasses filter only the light that makes light-sensitive people uncomfortable and lets good light pass through. Different glasses have different levels of light blocking or transmission, so get ones designed for your needs.
What is Light Sensitivity?
Light sensitivity or photophobia is a condition that causes bright lighting to hurt your eyes. this condition has many potential causes. This condition is a symptom of underlying causes and can have differing degrees of seriousness. It is important to visit your physician to find the underlying cause and treat that. Treating the cause can reduce the severity of the symptoms.
Light sensitivity can cause actual pain when a person is in bright sunlight or glaring indoor light. It can cause headaches. Light sensitivity is connected to the path between the cells in a person’s eyes that detect light and the nerves that go to the head. Photophobia is often linked to migraine headaches or cluster headaches. Some people with light sensitivity have what is called Sensory Processing Disorder, which is a neurological disorder.
Causes of Light Sensitivity
Light sensitivity or photophobia can be caused by health problems including the following.
· Meningitis is the swelling of the brain’s protective covering
· A serious brain injury
· Tumors in the pituitary gland
· Supranuclear palsy
· Dry eye
· Uveitis or swelling inside a person’s eye
· Iritis or Keratitis, which are a swelling of the eye cornea or pupil
· Damage to the retina
There are mental health conditions that may cause photophobia, including:
· Panic disorder
· Agoraphobia or fear of public places
· Bipolar disorder
Other causes may include LASIK surgery, blue light from smartphones or computers, and some medications.
Because there are so many possible causes of light sensitivity, it is important to see a doctor to narrow down the underlying condition and treat it. The doctor can also help with ideas to reduce light sensitivity or deal with it.
More Changes That Help Light Sensitivity
There are other changes that don’t cost a lot but can help reduce light sensitivity. Streaks of dirt or jarring wallpaper patterns or wall colors can make light sensitivity worse. Wash down walls and surfaces to get rid of dirt streaks. Remove wallpaper with patterns that cause eye problems. Paint walls with soft, relaxing colors. If upholstery pieces are covered with loud patterns, consider covers in solid fabrics.
Mirrors and shiny metal surfaces can also cause pain for light-sensitive people. Removing mirrors or covering them might be helpful. Shiny metallic surfaces can cause pain when light hits them. Consider covering up or replacing these pieces with wooden or painted items. The goal here is to make a calming interior space that gets rid of glare and too much pattern or light movement. Think of letting the eyes rest and have less stimulation.
It is a big mistake to wear too dark sunglasses or have the interior of the room too dark. This will make light sensitivity worse. Eyes become adjusted to the low level of light, then when you must go outside or to more brightly lit areas, the discomfort will be worse.
Everyone must spend time out of doors, and the fresh air is healthy. So, make sure to protect the eyes with good-quality sunglasses that block the blue range of light. Avoid looking into the sun or at sun glare on water or glass surfaces. Standing or sitting in the shade can be helpful. It might also help to wear a wide-brimmed hat to shade the face.
It is important to not let light sensitivity drive you indoors to dark rooms. Enjoy life with a few adjustments while you get the underlying cause of your condition treated. Control your environment rather than let it limit you. Investing in window coverings and special light sensitivity glasses will be well worth the cost if it makes life more comfortable.
As awful as it may sound, limiting time spent on smartphones and computers and their blue light can be a big help. Some people find doing relaxing types of exercises such as yoga help them.