How to Protect Your Eyes from Sun Damage

Jun, 2023 | Eye Health Info

Summer is almost here, which means it’s time to get outside and soak up some sun! We all know how important it is to protect our skin from the sun’s harmful rays, but did you know that your eyes need just as much protection? Exposure to ultraviolet (UV) rays can cause serious damage to your eyes, including cataracts, macular degeneration, and even cancer.  

Luckily, protecting your eyes from the sun is easy and can be stylish at the same time! Here are some tips to help keep you and your family’s eyes safe from the sun this summer:

1. Wear sunglasses

The easiest way to protect your eyes from the sun is to wear sunglasses. Make sure to choose sunglasses that block out 100% of both UVA and UVB rays and that fit well and cover your eyes completely. Also, look for sunglasses with polarized lenses, which reduce glare and improve clarity.

2. Wear a hat

Wearing a hat with a brim can help protect your eyes from the sun’s rays, especially during peak hours when the sun is the strongest. A wide-brimmed hat is best, as it can also protect your face and neck. 

3. Choose contacts wisely

If you wear contact lenses, choose ones that offer UV protection. Always check the packaging or ask your eye doctor, as not all contact lenses provide this. Contact lenses that have UV protection can reduce the amount of UV rays entering the eye by at least 90%. 

4. Avoid peak sun hours

Plan your outdoor activities accordingly and avoid the sun during peak hours when it’s at its strongest, usually from 10 am to 4 pm. If you need to be outside during those hours, be sure to take frequent breaks in the shade and wear sunglasses. Even on cloudy days, UV rays are still present and can reflect off surfaces like sand, water, and snow.

5. Keep it cool

When it’s hot outside, we tend to rub our eyes more often, increasing the risk of eye infections and irritations. Try to keep your hands clean and avoid touching your eyes as much as possible. Applying a cool compress or using cool eye drops can help reduce dryness, swelling, and itching caused by the heat. 

6. Get regular eye exams

Even if you don’t have any current eye health problems, it’s essential to get regular eye exams. During an exam, your doctor can detect early signs of eye problems such as cataracts, glaucoma, or macular degeneration. Early detection is essential for prompt treatment and for preventing further damage. 

By following these simple steps, you can help protect your eyes from sun damage and ensure healthy vision for years to come. If you have any concerns or it’s been a while since your last eye exam, give us a call in Tinley Park to schedule an appointment!  

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