In celebration of National Sunglasses Day on June 27, I recently participated in a webinar presented by The Vision Council (facilitated by Dora Adamopoulos, Optometrist and Medical Advisor to The Vision Council) to bring you these important facts on the health benefits of sunglasses. I’m really grateful to have been invited to participate in this webinar, as I’ve learned so much about the importance of UV-protective eye habits and the use of sunglasses, how to choose the right pair of sunglasses, myths and facts about sunglasses and more!
Here are some facts I learned from the webinar (and that I know, you’ll be interested to learn too!)
* Sunglass Habits. One in four Americans rarely or never wear sunglasses, leaving eyes at risk; 2 in 3 Americans leave eyes unguarded on cloudy or rainy days; and 3 in 10 Americans don’t protect their eyes in the winter, when UV rays are still present
* UV Radiation impacts children differently than adults. I was surprised by the fact that by the time child turns 18, an individual receives nearly 25 percent of lifetime UV protection to the eye. Children receive THREE times the annual adult dose of radiation.
* Reflected UV light is just as damaging as direct UV. The level of UV entering the eye in the early morning (8am-10am) and late afternoon (2pm-4pm) is nearly double that of midday hours (10am-2pm) at most times of the year.
So why is UV protection important?
This infographic shows how UV infiltrates to unprotected eyes:
Short term vision problems:
- Hypersensitivity to light
Long term UV-related eye damage:
- Premature aging of the skin, wrinkles and sunspots
- Pterygium (abnormal growths on the eye and eyelid)
- Macular degeneration
- Cancer of the eye, eyelid, and surrounding skin
Do you live in any of these cities listed below? Check it out!
3 Top Myths About Sunglasses:
Myth 1: All sunglasses have UVA and UVB protection. Not all sunglasses are created equal and offer sun protection. Therefore, when you purchase a pair of sunglasses, look for a label, sticker or tag that indicates UV protection.
Myth 2: Sunglasses with UV protection are expensive. You don’t have to pay a premium to get proper UV protection. Reputable retailers usually offer sunglasses that have UV protection. Note that sunglass frames, lens quality or specific lens material may play a factor in the overall price.
Myth 3: The darker the lens is, the better the protection. Contrary to this myth, some dark lenses offer no UV protection and can actually be worse than not wearing sunglasses at all. They cause the pupils to dilate, which then increases the retina to get exposed to the unfiltered UV. So even if dark lenses feel comfortable, they actually cause more harm than good to your eyes. So UV protection has nothing to do with the darkness or color of a lens.
How To Protect Your Eyes:
1. When purchasing a new pair of sunglasses, be sure to look for the ones tagged or labeled with UVA and UVB protection and wear them as often as possible.
2. Actively engage your children in UV Protection. This means, lead by example, and include them in the sunglass shopping experience. Also, look for comfortable, playful sunglasses that they will enjoy wearing. Sunglasses with large frames or adjustable straps (velcro or elastic) will more likely stay in place. And look for frames without hinges so that children can put on their own glasses without pinching themselves.
This helpful infographic from The Vision Council discusses the different types of sunglasses and how to choose the right pair, depending on your own needs and individual preferences. I am loving the BCBG Daring in Nude sunglasses (pictured above) that I received for this post. I don’t deny the fact that I also factor in style (besides comfort and function) when I shop for sunglasses. These are comfortable, stylish and are just perfect to wear now that it’s been mostly in the 80’s, bright and sunny here in Northern Virginia.
And because I love sharing information that are helpful for my dear Hip Mama’s Place readers, here is an infographic summary of what I learned from the webinar and report findings on the use of sunglasses and how it affects the overall health of our eyes.
*Hip Mama’s Place Disclosure: “This is a sponsored post written by me for The Vision Council. I was provided promotional items to facilitate this post. As always, all reviews and opinions expressed are 100% my own”.