Do you wear sunglasses every time you leave the house? What about your kids do they? Do you wear them even when it’s overcast? I didn’t until the other day. My eye doctor always talked about how it was important to do but I didn’t really understand until the other day. I attended a webinar put on by The Vision Council and Dr. Dora Adamopoulos. Now that I fully grasp how important UV protection is I want to share it with everyone. When better to do it then today, National Sunglasses Day?
What Can Happen If I don’t Wear Sunglasses?
Well in short a lot! But there is one really big word that scares me… photokeratitis. Also known as a sunburn on your eyes! Scary right? Well that is just one of the short term symptoms when you don’t use UV protection. Here are some more, redness, swelling, hyper sensitive to light and irritation. Even more frightening are the long term effects of UV exposure, cataracts, macular degeneration, cancer of the eye lids and pterygium ( a big word for growths on your eyes). All of this horrifies and scares me.
Facts About UV Radiation
- Water reflects up to 100% of UV Rays.
- Snow Reflects up to 85% of UV Rays.
- Dry Sand and Concrete Reflect up to 25% and Grass Reflects up to 3% of UV Rays.
- Most people think mid-day is when there is the most UV exposure but Actually the most dangerous hours are between 8-10am and 2-4pm you are exposed to double the UV Radiation.
Myths About UV Radiation
- Darker lens means better protection-This is just a preference thing. If you like darker that’s ok and lighter is too. As long as the glasses are UVB/UVA protective.
- Sunglasses with UVA/UVB protection are expensive- They cost no more the regular sunglasses and can be bought even at your local drug store.
- You don’t need sunglasses on cloudy days – Have you ever gotten a “sunburn” on a cloudy day? All those UV Rays are still hitting your eyes and doing damage.
- Children don’t need sunglasses- WRONG, Children’s eyes are still developing and thus receive THREE times the amount of UV radiation.
How do I protect my eyes?
It’s so easy to protect your and your children’s eyes. The biggest part is starting new habits. Make it a habit to never leave the house without sunglasses. Start them young and even if they refuse keep trying. Lead by example if you always wear your sunglasses they will see that. Include your children in the shopping experience let them choose their own frames, just make sure the lenses have the UVA/UVB sticker. If you spend a lot of time around water a polarized lens will be more comfortable. Also consider larger or wrap around frames to increase area covered. For more information about UV Rays check out The Vision Council on Facebook.Thank you to The Vision Council who provided me with some products to use to protect my family from UV rays and have fun in the sun. Thank you to Dr. Adamopoulos for teaching me so much about why we need to protect out eyes.