Ultraviolet rays from the sun can cause significant damage to the eyes.
Spending time in the sun without wearing propereye protectioncan contribute to cataracts, macular degeneration and cancerous and non-cancerous
growths on the eye. To prevent eye damage, and to protect your eyes following
vision correction surgery orcataract eye surgery, you should wear sunglasses whenever you are outside in the sun.
During the summer, the sun’s UVA and UVB rays are at least three
times higher than they are during the winter, but even in the fall and
winter seasons, the ultraviolet rays can damage the eyes. Sunglasses should
be worn any time you are outside, especially if participating in water
sports or snow sports. Eye surgery and even some medications can increase
photosensitivity, making it even more critical to wear sunglasses.
When selecting sunglasses, you should look for more than a designer label
(though it is possible to finddesigner sunglassesmade to protect your eyes). Select sunglasses that are specifically designed
to protect the eye from the sun’s ultraviolet rays, not just designed
to make a fashion statement. Follow these guidelines when selecting protective eyewear:
Look for sunglasses that block at least 99 percent of ultraviolet rays. This is the most important factor to consider when buying sunglasses. If
you don’t select sunglasses with UV Protection, you aren’t
doing your eyes any good. Wraparound sunglasses are ideal, as they will
also block rays from entering from the side. UV protection has nothing
to do with how dark the tint of your sunglasses is. If the label reads
“UV absorption up to 400m,” it is equivalent to 100 percent
Select sunglasses with impact-resistant lenses. While no lens is truly unbreakable, look for sunglasses with plastic or
polycarbonate plastic lenses. These are more likely to resist shatter
when hit. Polycarbonate plastic lenses are used in many sport sunglasses
because they are the strongest lenses, but they also scratch easily. If
you go with polycarbonate lenses, look for a pair with a scratch-resistant coating.
Check the optical quality of sunglasses.You want sunglasses to protect your eyes from the sun’s rays, but
you also want to be able to see well when wearing your sunglasses. The
only way to check UV protection is to use a UV meter to test your sunglasses.
One frequently asked question we receive is, “Can't sunglasses
be dangerous for the eyes because they dilate the pupil and cause extra
UV exposure onto the lens?” Well, in some cases this is true, But
NOT for good quality sunglasses. Properly manufactured sunglasses absorb
100 percent of the ultraviolet (UV) rays that can damage your eyes. If
you have doubts about your sunglasses, come our Key-Whitman Optical Centerwhere we have little machines, called UV meters, that can measure the amount
of UV a lens can absorb. It takes just a few seconds to read the UV meter
and ensure your eyes are properly protected.
Sunglasses should be worn in any season, even on cloudy days and are most
critical at peak sun times between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. when the UV rays
are strongest. Eye protection should also be used when tanning in a tanning bed.
TheKey-Whitman Optical Centeroffers a variety of eyewear and sunglasses choices, including the latest
in designer sunglasses. All of our sunglasses provide 100 percent ultraviolet
protection, and we offer many pairs with “true” polarization.
Our optical center is open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Do you have questions about how the sun may damage your eyes? Ask us in
the comments below, or on ourFacebook Page!