UV damage to the eyes can be immediate, as with a corneal sunburn, and also cumulative, which may include eye cancers and growths on and around the eye. This damage can contribute to cataracts and likely the progression of macular degeneration.
This applies to the kids too. According to The Vision Council, children receive three times the annual sun exposure of adults.
It’s not just sunny summer days you need to worry about either. Eyes and skin can accumulate harmful UV radiation while you are outdoors on overcast days as well as cold winter days too. Protecting your eyes today can help keep them healthy in the future. These following tips will help you select the best UV protection for your eyes:
- Wear sunglasses that block 100% of UV-A and UV-B rays or 100% protection against UV 400 in conjunction with a brimmed hat. UV protection has nothing to do with the darkness or color of the lenses.
- Use wrap-around sunglasses. They do the best job of protecting the eyes and skin around the eyes (of course, sunscreen also works.)
- Some contact lenses may offer UV protection but do not protect the entire eye and the skin around it. Always wear sunglasses with your contacts.
- Sunglasses, especially for children, should be made of unbreakable polycarbonate for active lifestyles. Cheap or toy sunglasses may not offer adequate protection.
To promote the importance of UV protection to maintain healthy eyes, The Vision Council has made June 27th National Sunglasses Day. On this day, ESA is offering 30% off sunglasses, prescription or non-prescription, at any of our clinics. See Optician for details. Good on prescription and non-prescription sunglasses. Cannot be combined with any vision insurance.
The material contained in this article is for informational purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health care provider.