July is UV Safety Awareness Month, and Eye Medical Clinic wants to remind you that your skin is not the only thing that needs protection from the sun’s harmful UV rays. Don’t forget about your eyes! They need UV protection year-round, no matter where you live.
UV Safety Explained
UV light ages all structures of the eye. There are two types of UV rays: UV-A and UV-B. Over time, the effects of UV rays may contribute to a number of eye problems. UV-A rays may affect central vision. They can damage the macula, a part of the retina at the back of the eye. The front part of the eye (the cornea and the lens) absorbs most UV-B rays, but these rays may cause even more damage to the eyes than UV-A rays.
Sun Safety Is So Much More than Sunscreen
Eye issues like corneal damage, cataracts and macular degeneration are all possible chronic effects from UV exposure and can ultimately lead to decreased vision. Additionally, UV light is associated with skin cancers including squamous cell carcinomas, basal cell carcinomas, and cutaneous melanoma. Squamous cell carcinoma can occur not just on the skin, but on the conjunctiva and invade the cornea and inside of the eye, in some cases necessitating removal of the entire eye.
Eye Medical Clinic Is Your Source for Sunglasses
According to a national Sun Safety Survey conducted by the American Academy of Ophthalmology, only about 50 percent of the people who wear sunglasses say they check the UV rating before buying. It’s not hard to protect yourself if you know the steps to take. In order to be eye smart in the sun, the American Academy of Ophthalmology recommends:
- Wear sunglasses labeled “100% UV protection”
- Choose sunglasses that block both UVA and UVB rays.
- Wear a hat along with your sunglasses.
- Know that clouds don’t block UV light: The sun’s rays can pass through haze and clouds.
- Be extra careful in UV-intense conditions: Sunlight is strongest midday to early afternoon, at higher altitudes, and when reflected off of water.
Picking a proper frame is key when picking a pair of sunglasses. You need to make sure the sunglasses protect against UVA and UVB rays, but you also want to ensure that the frame is big enough to give you adequate sun protection. Sunglasses that wrap around the eyes offer even better sun protection and polarized sunglasses help reduce reflection off of cars, the street, water and other reflective surfaces.
Our experienced optical team can help you find the perfect pair. We can help you narrow down your choices so you can find the look, fit and functionality you want – so that you are not only seeing your best, but looking your best, too! And, protecting your precious eyes.
See Every Moment and Protect Your Eyes this Summer
From routine eye exams to complicated cataract surgeries, Eye Medical Clinic can expertly care for every member of your family, in every season! We invite you to experience the VIP treatment every patient can expect to receive at Eye Medical Clinic.
Our team of dedicated doctors John Sullivan, MD; Jeanie Paik, MD; Tamer Hadi, MD; and Christina Nguyen Deane, OD, as well as a highly trained staff, is dedicated to helping you enjoy your life to the fullest…with the clear vision you deserve. We would be honored to serve you. Schedule an appointment today.