It is summertime, and you're looking forward to spending hours in the sun. You remembered to apply sunblock to protect your skin when you went out. However, you probably forgot to protect your eyes from UV rays. Sunglasses are essential to protect your eyes from ultraviolet exposure, lowering your risk of eye damage.
Ultraviolet (UV) rays are a type of light emitted by the sun, which has benefits like vitamin D creation. However, they also have harmful effects like sunburn and eye damage. UV rays come in two types: UV-A and UV-B. Each has a different impact on your eye health.
Ultraviolet A can hurt the central vision. It can damage your macula, the part of the retina. Damage to the macula can lead to macular degeneration and other macular diseases.
The cornea and the lens, the front part of the eyes, mainly absorb ultraviolet B. Exposure to too much UVB can lead to retinal degeneration and cataract formation.
When overexposed to UV rays, you increase your risk of developing eye diseases and other health problems. Some serious conditions you can develop are cataracts, eye cancer, and snow blindness.
You can protect your eyes from the sun in various ways, such as wearing sunglasses or a parasol when outdoors. But sunglasses can best protect your eyes from sun damage. Sunglasses come with multiple features to protect your vision. Some of those elements are UV coating, anti-reflective coating, and polarized lenses.
The most important feature of sunglasses is the UV coating. It is added to the lenses to block UV rays from damaging your eyes. It is usually added to plastic lenses, while polycarbonate glasses already have UV protection. Look for sunglasses with 100% UV protection to be sure they can protect your eyes.
The AR coating removes reflections, halos, and glare in your sunglasses. With this coating, you can see an image by keeping light from reflecting off the sunglasses' back surface. It helps you feel comfortable in the sun and even eases the effects of prolonged computer use.
Polarized lenses don't provide UV protection. However, these lenses help filter and block out reflected light. If you are often outdoors, where polarized light can reduce visibility and cause glare, you should consider these lenses. By wearing sunglasses with 100% UV protection and polarized lenses, you can protect your eyes from UV rays and safely engage in outdoor activities, including driving.
Exposure to sunlight has excellent positive effects, but only if you protect your eyes from UV rays. Spend some time outside in the sun to get natural light to help you sleep better and allow your body to create vitamin D. Ensure that you have your sunglasses on!
Discover more about your eye health by calling Advanced Eyecare Central Coast at (805) 773-6000. You can also visit our office in Pismo Beach, California.