Protecting your Eyes

Posted 10/30/2012 | By HealthCorps

It’s the accessory that can make you look hip but sunglasses are not just for fashion.  The color of the lens and how much UV (ultraviolet) screening they provide can be crucial to eye health.  The lens tint isn’t as important as the “UV protection level,” and if you choose very dark lenses without a high percentage of UV filtering, you could be setting yourself up for macular degeneration or premature cataracts.  A very dark lens will stimulate your pupil to dilate and the larger the pupil sans adequate UV filtering in the sunglass lens, the greater the cumulative damage to your eyes.

Make sure you choose sunglasses with large lenses and check for a label that suggests “95-100% UV protection.”  In terms of cutting the sun’s glare, grey or green tinted lenses are best.  If you spend lots of time on boats or at the beach, then bronze or amber colored lenses are best.  Wear your sunglasses year round, especially on sunny days.  The glare of the sun off white snow can also harm unprotected eyes.


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