We wait all year for Summer to finally roll around so we can start enjoying beach season, outdoor barbeques, or going on vacation. This July, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services would like to call special awareness to UV rays and the potential harm they pose. You may already wear sunscreen to protect your skin, but are you giving enough thought towards protecting your eyes?
Ultra-violet rays can cause damage to your eyes either immediately by excessive exposure or by accumulating enough prolonged exposure over time, even leading to cataracts or macular degeneration. UV rays may be strongest during the late Spring and Summer months, but the sun never stops producing these radioactive rays, which may not be quite as strong as an X-ray, but definitely not to be taken lightly, for your skin or eye health.
It’s important to always wear some kind of protection for your eyes, anytime you are outdoors. This is especially true for those of us living in Florida, where we are closer to the equator than many other states. People of all ages need to be protected and conscious of the possible harmful effects, even if the symptoms of ocular damage don’t present themselves until later in life.
How to Determine Your UV Risk
You can monitor the UV intensity index daily before going outside here on the Environmental Protection Agency’s website. Many of our local Meteorologists will also be thoughtful enough to include the current rating in their News reports. The risk of overexposure is rated on a scale of 0 to 11+, with the higher numbers meaning the greater the risk and over 11 is considered extremely dangerous.
It is not uncommon for the UV index in Jacksonville, FL to regularly rank at 11 during the Summer months. If you have to go out, GRAB YOUR SUNGLASSES!
Proper Eye Protection
The best possible choice for protection would be a pair of wrap-around sunglasses that block 100% of both UV-A and UV-B rays. They must include glare reduction and preferably not distort colors. Below are a couple examples of sunglasses available in our office that fit these requirements, by Oakley.
Luckily, brands like Ray Ban, Costa, and even designers like Prada have made an effort to offer strong UV protection along with modern, fashionable styles. In fact, at Trillium Eye Care, we can turn ANY of our frames into your new favorite sunglasses. Additional options like Transition lenses, which will intelligently darken when UV exposure is detected and then return to their clear lens state once back indoors, are also available.
There is no excuse not to protect your eyes from the sun this Summer. Your eyes and future self will be very grateful that you did. With top brands offering a wide selection of styles, you can even look good doing it.
Click here to schedule an eye exam online or feel free to walk-in anytime to our office on Old St. Augustine Road and try on sunglasses from one of the largest selections of designer frames in Jacksonville
Phone : +1 (904) 379-5450
Locally owned and operated by optometrists in Jacksonville, Florida; we seek to provide our community with professional eye care for all ages.
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