Under the blazing sun of the hottest months of summer, you protect your skin from sunburn with hats, the shade of a tree, or generous amounts of sunscreen, but do you take measures to protect your eyes? Just like your skin, it is much easier to take care of your eyes now, to prevent future damage later on. We may not always think exposure to the sun can make a huge difference on our eyes, but in the long run, small preparations go a long way.
The sun is full of harmful UV rays and extended exposure to these rays has been linked to eye damage including, cataracts, macular degeneration, pingueculae and pterygia (also known as surfer’s eye) and photokeratitis, which can cause temporary vision loss. Depending on the type, UV rays can affect your eyesight in different ways. There are two types of UV rays; UVA and UVB. UVA rays can hurt your central vision. It has a lower energy and is penetrated deep into the eye, which may injure the macula. UVB rays can do damage to your cornea and lens; these types of rays are considered to be more dangerous to your vision.
The simplest way to protect your eyes from the sun is to wear sunglasses. When choosing a pair of sunglasses, don’t base your choice off looks. Make sure you are picking a pair that blocks UV rays and protects your vision, not just your style. Sunglasses with a wraparound frame will give you the most protection.
Swimming in the summer is a great past time, especially in the land of ten thousand lakes. We have to make sure to protect our eyes from the harmful effects of swimming pools and natural bodies of water. Swimming pools contain chlorine which can create that burning sensation when you open your eyes under water. Too much of this can irritate your eyes causing redness, itchiness, and inflammation. Natural bodies of water contain different bacterias and debris that can get in your eyes and make you at risk of several irritants and eye diseases. Also, remember that wearing contacts does not mean you are protected. Contacts can trap the different bacterias and extra chlorine in the water and can cause more damage to your eyes.
However, don’t feel like you can’t enjoy swimming during the summer. Goggles are a simple way to stay protected. You might actually enjoy swimming more since you won’t have that constant itchy and irritated feeling!
Enjoy your summer out in the sun, but don’t forget to protect your eyes! If you have any questions about eye health, stop into Infinite Eye Care or check out our website. We would be happy to assist you in any way possible!