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Overexposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation is one of the potential culprits for serious eye problems. It has potential links to cataracts, macular degeneration, and even skin cancer around the eyes. As such, sunglasses are more than just a luxury but also a necessity. It’s not just a fashion statement.
Some might assume that UV radiation is harmless. If you do your research, however, you’ll understand its dangers. Luckily, the right sunglasses can offer excellent protection. Read on to learn more.
Understanding Ultraviolet (UV) Radiation
Before going out, you’re probably spending time applying natural and organic sunscreen because you’re afraid of what the sun can do to your face. However, have you also ever thought of your eyes? They’re as vulnerable but often ignored by many people.
UV radiation comes from the sun. It is invisible to the human eye. Meanwhile, it has three categories: UVA, UVB, and UVC. UVC is blocked by the earth’s atmosphere, but UVA and UVB can still reach the earth’s surface.
Overexposure to UV radiation can cause seriously impact eye health, including skin cancer and eye damage. In particular, the eyes are extremely vulnerable to the effects of UV radiation. Prolonged exposure might cause short-term effects such as photokeratitis. The latter is essentially a sunburn of the cornea.
However, its long-term effects can be more serious. Cataracts, which are the clouding of the eye’s natural lens, are a common result of long-term exposure to UV radiation. According to eyefacts.com, however, the most common cause of cataracts is ageing. It can cause blurry vision and difficulty seeing in low-light conditions. It may require surgery to correct.
Note that UV radiation can reflect off surfaces such as water, sand, and snow. In turn, it can increase the risk of eye damage. This is why it’s crucial to wear sunglasses even on cloudy days or during winter sports.
Your sunglasses must block 100% of UVA and UVB rays for effective defence against the harmful effects of UV radiation. Some sunglasses may also block blue light, which can cause eye strain and fatigue. By taking the necessary precautions and wearing sunglasses with UV protection, you can help prevent serious eye problems and improve your overall eye health.
Different Types of Sunglasses
Here are three popular types of sunglasses and their benefits:
Polarised sunglasses have a special filter that blocks the glare from reflective surfaces such as water, snow, and pavement. Polarised sunglasses can also improve visual clarity and reduce eye strain.
Its surface comes with a reflective coating. It’s responsible for reducing the amount of light that enters the eyes. It can be suitable in bright conditions, such as snow skiing or snowboarding. Mirrored sunglasses can also provide a fashionable look while offering eye protection.
Photochromic lenses are lenses that darken when exposed to UV radiation and lighten when there is less UV radiation present. Photochromic lenses can also eliminate the need for separate prescription sunglasses and regular eyeglasses.
Factors to Consider When Choosing Sunglasses
Choosing the right sunglasses for eye protection goes beyond selecting a certain type of lens or frame. Here are some key factors to consider:
Look for sunglasses that block 100% of UVA and UVB rays. Additionally, some sunglasses may also block blue light, which can cause eye strain and fatigue.
Different lens colours can have different benefits. For example, grey lenses can reduce brightness and glare without distorting colours, while brown lenses can enhance contrast and improve depth perception. Green lenses can also enhance contrast and reduce glare, making them a good choice for golfers.
The material of the frame can impact both the durability and the weight of the sunglasses. Common materials include plastic, metal, and nylon. Plastic frames tend to be lightweight and affordable, while metal frames can be more durable and offer a classic look. Nylon frames are lightweight and durable, making them a good choice for sports or other outdoor activities.
Fit and Comfort
Look for a pair that fits well. See to it that the fit is snug and that it does not slide down your nose. Also, consider weight and its overall feel. It’s a good idea to try them on. before purchasing.
Consider Product Standards
The British Standard for sunglasses (BS EN ISO 12312-1:2013) is a recognised standard that provides guidelines for the manufacture and testing of sunglasses. The standard specifies requirements for the lenses’ optical properties, including how much UV radiation they block, and the frames’ durability and strength.
High-quality sunglasses are investments for your eye health. By taking the necessary precautions and selecting sunglasses that provide optimal eye protection, you can enjoy your time outdoors without compromising your eye health. Stay safe and enjoy the sun with confidence, knowing that you’ve chosen the right sunglasses for optimal eye protection.