UV Protection and Your Eyes

Friday, January 15th, 2016, 10:35 am

When the sun is shining and the weather is warm, it’s perfectly natural to sport your favorite accessory – sunglasses. Besides looking good, you’re protecting your eyes from the sun’s rays. But did you know that even when it’s overcast and freezing cold, you’re still exposed to UV radiation? In fact, because of the glare of snow, radiation exposure nearly doubles when you ski, snowboard, or play in the snow. Some of the long-term effects associated with UV exposure include cataracts and macular degeneration. That’s why it’s crucial to protect your eyes from UV rays every day of the year. Here’s how:

Choose Sunglasses Wisely
In order to get the most eye protection out of your sunglasses, make sure your sunglasses have lenses that block out at least 99 percent of UV-A and UV-B radiation, as well as screen out 75 to 90 percent of light. They should also have brown and amber tints, which help with depth perception, an advantage that’s especially good for skiing and snowboarding.

Protect Against the Wind
In addition to UV exposure, cold winds are another hindrance in the winter months. This can lead to itching and eye irritation. To better shield yourself from solar radiation, opt for polarized lenses which absorb light and help your eyes relax. And to protect against the nagging wind, try sunglasses with wrap around frames.

Remember Elevation
The higher the altitude, the thinner the air. And this means more UV radiation in the atmosphere. In addition to wearing sunscreen with protection of at least 30 SPF, keep your eyes safe by always wearing the appropriate sunglasses outdoors, especially the higher up you are.

See Your Doctor
It is recommended that you visit a doctor of optometry at least every two years for a complete eye exam, during which time your doctor can keep track of your solar protection needs and monitor your eye health and vision.

If you would like more information about caring for your eyes, or to schedule an appointment, please complete our convenient online contact form. For locations, click here to find a center near you.

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Category: Optical Services


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