It comes fairly naturally to most of us to protect our skin from the harmful effects of the sun. However, far fewer of us realize that UV light is just as harmful to our delicate eyes. The effects of prolonged exposure to the sun are cumulative, meaning that over time, the effects gradually increase until there is irreversible damage to our eyes and eyesight.
The UV radiation is believed to be a contributing factor in the development of a variety of different eye problems. By choosing to properly protect your eyes against the harmful effects of UV radiation, you can experience health benefits that include a reduced risk of developing the problem eye health problems:
- Photokeratitis. Photokeratitis is essentially known as sunburn of the eye, can be very painful and cause issues such as light sensitivity, grittiness, and blurred vision.
- Photoconjunctivitis. This condition is characterized by inflammation of the conjunctiva caused by exposure to UV light.
- Cataracts. A leading cause of blindness, a cataract is a clouding of the natural lens of the eye caused by proteins clumping together. There is no way of stopping their progression, and surgery is needed to replace the lens with an artificial version.
- Macular degeneration. This condition is characterized by damage to a part of the eye called the macula. This can lead to blurry sight and total vision loss.
- Pterygium. Also known as surfer’s eye, this abnormal growth of tissue can grow across the eye, compromising your vision.
- Pingueculae. A white or yellow bump on the white of the eye is the main symptom of pingueculae and is caused by a thickening of the conjunctiva. The lumps may be non-cancerous, but they can lead to symptoms such as those associated with dry eye disease, as well as stinging and burning.
- Cancer of the conjunctiva. There are several different types of cancer that can affect the eye, with most beginning in the conjunctiva.
- Skin cancer around the eyes. The skin around your eyes is just as likely to be affected by cancer as any other part of your body regularly exposed to UV light and as many as 10% of all skin cancers are found on the eyelids.
UV light is present throughout the daytime, even if it is cloudy. For this reason, sunglasses are recommended every time we step outside during the day, whatever the weather. This will help to reduce the amount of radiation that can reach your eyes and limit the amount of damage that you will sustain.
Advantages of Using a VSP Provider Like Centennial Family Eyecare of Las Vegas
Choose the Premier experience with Centennial Family Eyecare and see the difference. Getting the most out of your benefits has never been easier. VSP members get an extra $20 to spend on featured frame brands, and you'll always find a wide selection of these designer frames when you visit a provider who participates in the Premier Program. Plus, you'll get access to these exclusive offers and services:
There are countless different sunglasses available, both from retail outlets and directly from opticians. As well as there being an abundance of styles to select from, it is important to note that the quality of the lenses themselves can also vary significantly too, particularly in terms of how effective they are at blocking UV light. Some sunglasses are designed to be more stylish than functional. For the very best protection for your eyes, choose sunglasses that block out 95-100% UV light. They should all have a sticker or tag on them to tell you how effective they are at UV protection. However, if you aren’t sure, your eye doctor will be able to test them on your behalf and give you a definitive answer.
It may also be worth considering what color your sunglasses are. Darker lenses do not necessarily protect against UV any better, but the color of your lenses can affect glare and how suitable your shades are for certain activities. For example, brown lenses sharpen detail and provide excellent protection against glare. Finally, if you usually wear prescription lenses, it may be possible for you to have these turned into sunglasses too. Your eye doctor will be happy to advise you.
If you would like more information about the health benefits of wearing sunglasses, or if you would like to arrange an appointment to see what sunglasses we have available in our optical boutique, please get in touch with our expert team at our offices in Las Vegas, NV today.