Summer, Sunglasses & Sunscreen
It seems like June and summer hit all at once. As we enjoy the outdoor activities of summer, sunscreen and sunglasses are a winning combination. Sunglasses are an easy solution that makes life more comfortable when outdoors, while also providing critical protection from the sun’s damaging ultraviolet (UV) rays. But…all sunglasses don’t provide the protection you need to protect your eyes. UV sunglasses play a crucial role in protecting our eyes from the harmful effects of ultraviolet (UV) rays.
Importance of UV Sunglasses:
UV rays, particularly UVA and UVB, can cause significant damage to our eyes. Prolonged exposure to UV radiation can lead to various eye conditions, including cataracts, macular degeneration, and photokeratitis (sunburn of the cornea). Wearing UV sunglasses helps minimize the risk of these problems and ensures long-term eye health.
Effect of UV Rays on Cataracts:
Cataracts occur when the lens of the eye becomes clouded, resulting in blurry vision. UV radiation is a known risk factor for cataracts. The lens of the eye is highly sensitive to UV rays, and prolonged exposure can accelerate the formation and progression of cataracts. Wearing UV-protective sunglasses helps reduce the cumulative exposure to UV radiation and lowers the risk of cataract development.
How to Choose Sunglasses:
When choosing sunglasses for UV protection, consider the following factors:
- UV Protection: Look for sunglasses that provide 100% UV protection or block both UVA and UVB rays. The label should indicate this feature.
- Lens Quality: Opt for sunglasses with high-quality lenses that offer clear and undistorted vision.
- Lens Color: While lens color doesn’t necessarily indicate UV protection, gray, green, and brown lenses are good choices as they reduce brightness without altering colors.
- Polarized Lenses: Polarized sunglasses can help reduce glare, improving visual comfort, especially in outdoor activities near water or snow.
- Fit and Coverage: Select sunglasses that fit well and provide adequate coverage, ensuring that UV rays don’t reach your eyes from the sides or top.
Sunglasses and Kids:
- Protecting children’s eyes from UV rays is equally important. Here are some considerations:
- Look for sunglasses specifically designed for children, as they are more likely to fit properly.
- Choose sunglasses that offer 100% UV protection.
- Opt for shatterproof lenses, as children are generally more active and prone to accidents.
- Consider wraparound styles or sunglasses with side shields to provide better coverage.
- Encourage children to wear sunglasses, especially during peak UV exposure times, such as midday.
Remember, in addition to wearing sunglasses, it’s essential to practice other sun safety measures, such as wearing a wide-brimmed hat and applying sunscreen around the eyes, for comprehensive eye protection during the summer or when exposed to strong sunlight. Time to hit the pool and enjoy the summer. If you have any questions on the best sunglasses for you or your family, call Bissell Eye Care at (724) 444-6767 or 724-226-0444.
About Bissell Eye Care: John D. Bissell, OD owns and operates Bissell Eye Care servicing Northern Pittsburgh and Alle-Kiski Valley regions. With two locations to treat patients, we offer evening and Saturday appointments. Bissell Eye Care provides comprehensive eye examinations for the entire family beginning as early as 6 months, ocular disease detection and treatment, eyeglasses, sunglasses, activewear, contact lenses, and low vision examinations for those with significant vision loss. We accept most types of vision and health insurance plans. For more information, visit bisselleyecare.com or call our Bakerstown Office at 724-443-6767 or Natrona Heights office at 724-226-0444.