UV Protection Sunglasses

UV Protection: Why Sunglasses Are Important

We’ve all heard that wearing sunglasses protects our eyes from the sun, but what exactly does that mean? In this post, we’ll discuss how exposure to sunlight can cause damage to your eyes, and how sunglasses can help.

How UV Rays Affect Your Eye Health

The sun can affect our eyes in many different ways, and different types of UV rays can affect the eyes and other parts of the body. UV-B is the type of UV ray that’s responsible for sunburns and skin damage, and UV-A affects cells deep within the body, playing a role in aging and eye health. When choosing sunglasses, it’s important to select a pair that has built-in protection against both UV-A and UV-B radiation to ensure your eyes are properly protected.

There are several ways that too much exposure to UV rays can affect your eyes. These include:

  • Photokeratitis: This is essentially a sunburn on the eyes caused by UV-B rays. It can happen when you’re exposed to intense UV radiation. Photokeratitis is temporary and can result in blurred vision, light sensitivity, and pain. It most often occurs as a result of snow reflection/snow blindness, especially at high altitudes, from water reflections, or from exposure to artificial UV radiation resulting from tanning beds or welders arcs.
  • Cataracts: Cataracts cause clouding in the lens of the eye. Many factors contribute to the likelihood of developing cataracts, including aging, genetics, diabetes, and previous eye surgeries. That said, sunlight has been shown to contribute to cataract development, and while sunglasses won’t directly prevent this condition, they can prevent cumulative UV damage to the eyes and prolong cataract development.
  • Eye cancers: Ocular melanoma is the most common type of eye cancer. It occurs most commonly in the iris, choroid, or ciliary body, but it can also appear on the conjunctiva or the eye socket. While eye cancers are rare, UV radiation is considered to be a risk factor by some medical professionals. Eye cancers can lead to long-term vision loss.
  • Pinguecula and Pterygium: These non-cancerous growths occur on the conjunctiva as a result of UV exposure. A pinguecula is a raised white or yellow growth that can cause dryness, while a pterygium is a wedge-shaped growth that starts in the conjunctiva and grows into the cornea, potentially affecting the vision due to the resulting change in the cornea’s shape.

How Sunglasses Can Help

The best way to protect your eyes from potential damage and serious eye conditions is to wear sunglasses.

There are two types of sunglasses: tinted and polarized. While both offer UV protection, tinting doesn’t do as good a job at eliminating glare, especially when it’s coming off of water or snow. When light hits non-metallic surfaces like snow, water, and asphalt, the reflection vibrates in two directions-polarization eliminates these horizontal waves and stops them from entering your eyes. This makes it particularly important to wear sunglasses year-round.

The Benefits of Different Lens Colours

If you’re shopping for sunglasses in Red Deer, you’ll notice that polarized sunglasses are available in an array of colours and tints.

  • Grey: Grey helps to reduce glare, especially for individuals who have light sensitivity. It shields from bright light, making it helpful for sunny days. Grey is a great choice when selecting all-purpose sunglasses.
  • Green: Green can filter out some blue light, and golfers and tennis players often prefer green sunglasses when seeking to filter bright sunlight.
  • Brown: Brown tint increases contrast, making it ideal for cloudy days. Its ability to brighten dull landscapes may also help improve depth perception while driving.

Protect Your Eyes: Shop for Polarized Sunglasses in Red Deer

Sunglasses are a great way to keep your eyes safe year-round, offering protection from potentially harmful UV-A and UV-B rays. They’re available in many styles, tints, and colours, each with varying benefits and functionalities.

To learn more about what type of sunglasses best suit your needs, visit Eyewear Experts in Downtown Red Deer or Gasoline Alley. Our experts can help you select a style and tint that you’ll love! Contact us today or visit us in-store.

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