The Benefits of Wearing Sunglasses in Direct Sunlight

sunglasses

In the public imagination, sunglasses are inextricably linked with style; they are an accessory that bestows style.  We don’t tend to think of them as an important aid to preserving the health of our eyes.


Whilst scientists may debate about the rate that UV levels are rising, there is no doubt that high levels of UV radiation present a major threat to human health.  If you are someone who believes that the only time that you really need to wear sunglasses is during those couple of weeks that you’re on vacation at the beach, then you need to think again.  The sun can be dangerous at all times of the year and arguably, at times, the low winter sun may present more of a threat than an overhead summer sun because the harmful UVA and UVB rays are shining directly into your eyes.  Snow reflects up to 80% of UV rays, a higher percentage than that reflected by sand or concrete. Excessive exposure to snow will burn the cornea and cause temporary blindness.  Wearing sunglasses not only looks cool, they also assist in maintaining the health of your eyes.  Sunglasses provide protection from sand, dust, wind and snow and if you are someone who wears prescription glasses, then there are plenty of prescription sunglass lenses which can be tailored to your vision. Look for sunglasses that block 100% of UVA and UVB radiation and the larger the lens, the more protection you’ll get.

Prevents macular degeneration

The macula, located in the retina, has a high concentration of photoreceptor cells, which provide the sharp central vision we need for seeing in detail. Macular degeneration is the main cause of vision loss. It causes blurred vision and if the condition continues, complete vision loss.

Prevents cataracts and complications from glaucoma

Cataracts are caused by a build up of protein, this clouds the lens of the eye, leading to blurred vision and eventual blindness.  It is estimated that 20% of cataracts are caused by UV rays.  Sunglasses with complete UV protection can help reduce your risk of cataracts or complications associated with glaucoma.

Protects the skin around the eyes

The skin around the eyes is thin, it’s a lot thinner than the skin on the rest of your face and therefore it is much more vulnerable and more likely to wrinkle. Large lenses are advised for maximum protection.

Reduces eyestrain

Polarised sunglasses reduce glare and make you less likely to suffer from headaches or migraines.  You should also ensure that you drink plenty of water to maintain a healthy lipid layer, which is necessary for a good optical surface on the cornea.

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