Every year on July 1st, Canadians from coast to coast gather to celebrate our nation’s birthday – Canada Day. This annual holiday marks the union of three colonies into a single Dominion within the British Empire on July 1, 1867. Since then, it has evolved into a day of national pride, unity, and vibrant festivities that showcase the diverse cultural fabric of the Great North.
As a proudly Canadian company, Eyewear Experts wants to wish you a safe and festive Canada Day. And with outdoor Canada Day celebrations approaching, we encourage you to prioritize one aspect that is often overlooked: your eye health.
How to Protect Your Eyes During Outdoor Festivities
Many Canada Day celebrations take place outdoors – from barbecues and community gatherings to fireworks and performances. Extended exposure to the sun’s rays can lead to conditions like photokeratitis, cataracts, and even certain eye cancers.
Just as you’d protect your skin from sunburn, it’s equally important to shield your eyes from these harmful rays. Here are some of our top tips for protecting your vision:
- Wear sunglasses with complete UV protection – Perhaps the most effective way to protect your eyes from UV exposure is by wearing sunglasses. But not all sunglasses are created equal. When purchasing sunglasses, look for a pair that blocks 99% to 100% of both UVA and UVB rays.
- Choose the right lens – Polarized lenses are a good option, as they reduce glare from reflective surfaces, improving comfort and visibility. But remember, polarization does not equate to UV protection, so make sure the lenses offer UV protection as well. For people sensitive to light or those with certain eye conditions, photochromic lenses, which automatically darken in sunlight, could be beneficial.
- Consider wraparound-style frames – Sunglasses that wrap around your eyes can protect your vision from the side, blocking UV rays that might slip in from the edges. This style is particularly useful for activities with high glare, like at the beach or in the snow.
- Don’t forget the kids – Children’s eyes are more susceptible to UV radiation, as they have larger pupils and clearer lenses. Make sure they’re equipped with appropriate sunglasses and hats when playing outside.
- Wear protective eyewear even on cloudy days – UV rays can penetrate through clouds, so it’s important to wear protective eyewear even on overcast days.
- Opt for a wide-brimmed hat or cap – For additional protection, wear a wide-brimmed hat or cap to shield your eyes from the sun. This is especially useful during the mid-day sun when the rays are strongest.
- Regular eye exams – Regular eye exams are crucial to detect early signs of eye damage due to UV radiation. If you spend a lot of time outdoors, inform your eye doctor so they can assess your risk and recommend protective measures.
Celebrating Our Great Nation
For many Canadians, Canada Day is an opportunity to explore the country’s natural wonders. Parks, lakes, and outdoor spaces become gathering places for families and friends who engage in activities such as hiking, picnicking, and canoeing.
While Canada Day brings jubilation and excitement, it is also an occasion for reflection. Canadians take a moment to acknowledge our Indigenous Peoples and their rich cultural heritage. It serves as a reminder of the ongoing journey toward reconciliation, fostering deeper understanding, and creating a more equitable future for all.
Eyewear Experts, as proudly Canadian as the land itself, wishes you all a Happy Canada Day. Let’s celebrate our heritage, our unity, and our ability to see and appreciate all the beauty our country has to offer!