This National Sunglasses Day, #ThrowShade for Proper UV Eye Protection

June 19, 2019
News

MyEyeDr. shares the dos and don’ts for staying safe and stylish this summer.

Vienna, Va. (June 13, 2019) – Millions of Americans will spend time outside enjoying the warmer weather this summer, making it even more important to sport shades that protect eyes from harmful ultraviolet (UV) rays. While 70 percent of U.S. adults report using at least one form of sun protection for skin when outdoors on a sunny day, The Vision Council, an independent authority in the optical industry, reports only 27 percent of Americans wear sunglasses every time they go outside. Prolonged UV exposure can damage eyes and lead to more serious vision issues, including cataracts and macular degeneration.

In recognition of National Sunglasses Day on June 27, MyEyeDr. has all of the information needed to stay safe and stylish this summer. By understanding key dos and don’ts around sunglasses and proper UV protection, individuals can make informed purchasing decisions and better protect eyes from harmful UV rays:

DO check the label for UVA/UVB protection  

Despite the health risks of UV exposure, not all sunglasses have quality UV protection. Since UV protection is crucial to shielding eyes from damaging radiation, it is imperative to look for a label, sticker or tag indicating UV protection before purchasing a pair of sunglasses from a reputable provider.

DO wear sunglasses during all sun exposure

According to the Vision Council,  only 68.6 percent of American adults report wearing sunglasses while driving. It is important to sport the suns during any exposure to natural light, including when casually spending time outdoors, relaxing near a body of water, watching a sporting event or participating in an outdoor activity. If you require vision correction, prescription sunglasses are a great choice to ensure you are seeing clearly and protecting eyes from harmful UV rays.

DON’T rely on dark lenses to properly shield eyes

UV protection has nothing to do with the color of the lens. Wearing sunglasses with dark lenses and inadequate UV protection can actually be worse than wearing no sunglasses at all. Because darker lenses cause the eye’s pupil to dilate, eyes are more exposed to unfiltered UV.

DON’T be fooled by cloud cover

Similar to cloudy days, UV risks exist even in cold weather. The sun is present year-round, which means UV rays are a constant regardless of the temperature. UV rays can’t be seen, but their long-term effects are extremely damaging to the eyes. While we celebrate National Sunglasses Day in June, it’s important to sport the shades all year round. And, for summer days spent lounging by the pool, cruising on a boat or laying on the beach, consider special polarized lenses to reduce glare from the water’s reflection in intense sunlight.

“Not all UV protection is created equal,” said Dr. Artis Beatty, chief medical officer at MyEyeDr. “By educating patients on what to look for when purchasing sunglasses, we are helping prevent short-term damage, including corneal damage, while decreasing the risk of more serious vision issues from prolonged exposure, including cataracts and macular degeneration.”

For the best protection and recommendations for sunglasses tailored to an individual’s lifestyle needs and unique vision, schedule an annual eye exam and ensure your eyes are properly protected from the sun. Follow #ThrowShade on Facebook throughout the month of June for more tips from MyEyeDr. on protecting eyes from the sun.