Summertime! It’s time for strolling the neighbourhood, enjoying favourite outdoor activities and soaking up the sunshine. All that extra outdoors time also means we need to get serious about sun protection. After all, no one wants sunburn or other damage caused by the sun. Pick up a fresh bottle of sunscreen – yes, this stuff does expire – and make sure you have good quality sun protection for your eyes.
What you need!
Most people choose sunglasses because they look great, and so they should. Just don’t forget that your shades have a serious job to do protecting your eyes.
Sunglasses allow your eyes to relax in bright light and glare and let you see clearly without interference from squinting and tearing. Most importantly, they filter out harmful UV rays, which cause damage to the retina leading to cataracts and other eye health issues. To protect your eyes and the very sensitive tissue surrounding them, you need sunglasses that block 100% of UV rays.
Look for sunglasses with minimum UV400 integrated in high-quality lens material. It doesn’t do any good if your UV coating rubs off with cleaning. You also want to be protected from light coming at you from all directions, including behind you. Sunglasses should fit you well, sitting close to your eyes and wrap or have wider temples to reduce side glare and reflection. For ultimate comfort, we suggest polarized lenses because they neutralize glare from hot and shiny surfaces, like pavement and water.
Have you considered getting sunglasses with your prescription? Ask us during your next visit.
Large oversized sunglasses are best! The wider the coverage, the safer your eyes will be. It isn’t recommended to put sunscreen on the delicate skin around your eyes. You risk getting the product in your eyes, which can lead to an eye infection. Best to apply the sunscreen on your face, and let oversized, quality sunglasses protect your eyes and the skin around them. Want extra protection? Combine your sunglasses with a wide-brimmed hat!
Our eyes are exposed to UV rays even on cloudy days, so whether the day calls for sunglasses or not, it is recommended to wear them when you are outdoors. Some lenses are not as dark as others, so on cloudy days, why not opt for a lighter lens to make it easier to see and although they are lighter, the UV-protected lenses will keep your eyes safe.
What you need to avoid!
While it’s fun to have loads of funky inexpensive sunglasses, you aren’t doing yourself any favours. In fact, those cheap sunglasses may actually be worse than no sunglasses at all! Why? Most have little or no UV protection. The darkened lenses make your pupils dilate to allow more light in, but that isn’t all that reaches your retina if lenses aren’t UV400 or more!
Contacts and Water Don’t Mix!
On warm days a nice swim is always refreshing! If you need to cool off with a quick dip, best not to wear your contact lenses. Contact lenses are like sponges. When they are exposed to water, they can absorb potential contaminants that can cause eye infections. Best to remove them before jumping off that diving board!
Looking for Hidden Treasures Underwater?
Some of us feel compelled to open our eyes underwater. It helps to navigate around busy public pools. If you must open your eyes underwater, think about wearing goggles to prevent the chlorine from the pool or sand from the lake from entering your eyes.
Looking for new sunglasses? Browse our collection. We’ve got the perfect pair for you: https://iris.ca/en/sunglasses
What you do outdoors helps determine which sunglasses you should choose. Make an appointment and one of our eye care professionals who will be happy to help you choose a style and the right lenses to give you the best vision and comfort.