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Many people are cheered by a bright, sunny day, but the effect of all that sunlight on the eyes is a less sunny proposition. UV and glare can create a variety of issues, from dangerous "snowblindness" to irreversible disorders that threaten your eyesight. Here are some frequently asked questions about the role of sunglasses in protecting the eyes from harm. If you want to know more about choosing the right sunglasses, call Dr. Jackman today at (714) 543-2022.
What are UV rays? UV stands for ultraviolet, a band of the light spectrum invisible to the eye. Ultraviolet light consists of UVA, UVB, and UVC rays. UVC rays are stopped in Earth's atmosphere before they reach the eye, but UVA and UVB can both reach the eye and potentially damage it.
How does UV affect unprotected eyes? UV rays can cause proteins inside the lens to become opaque or cloudy, a condition known as cataracts. Cataracts can interfere with night vision, reduce your ability to see colors, and make reading difficult; they cannot be reversed, only removed. UV exposure can also cause retinal damage, tissue damage in the white part of the eye called pingueculae, sight threatening pterygia, and a temporary but irritating "sunburn" of the cornea called photokeratitis.
How do I know my glasses will protect my eyes? Choose glasses that claim to block at least 99 percent of UV rays -- UVA as well as UVB. Look for labels reading "UV 400," since this designation means that the glasses block UV rays as small as 400 nanometers, providing 100 percent eye protection. Of course you need to protect your eyes from the glare caused by the visible spectrum as well. To accomplish this, select products that block 75 to 90 percent of visible light.
What are polarized lenses? Polarized lenses are specially designed to filter out certain types of glare that tend to reflect upward when sunlight bounces off horizontal surfaces. They are recommended for such tasks as boating, fishing, skiing, golfing, jogging, and driving. Most polarized lenses will bear a label identifying them as such
What types of glasses can I choose from? We are able to provide you with a wide range of sunglass options. If you normally wear glasses to correct your eyesight, you can choose from our vast selection of stylish sunglasses and we can customize them with your prescription. With new technological advances in lens design and fabrication, we can now put most any prescription in even wrap style frames. We also carry Wiley-X sunglasses in many sizes and styles. Every pair of Wiley X sunglasses meets stringent ANSI Z87.1 High Velocity and High Mass Impact Safety standards, providing occupational grade protection for all wearers and a wide range of activities. Wiley X is the only premium performance sunglass brand with this level of vision protection in every pair of glasses it makes
Lens technology has improved on many fronts. Photochromatic lenses glasses darken when exposed to bright light.The new photochromic lens,Transitions XTRActive offers better darkening in the car and in the shade. Transitions Vantage is polarized.
What additional types of protection should I consider? If you worry about light, including harmful UV, leaking in through sides or top of your sunglasses, wear a broad-brimmed hat to reduce some of this exposure. If you use prescription eyewear to correct your eyesight, you may also want to think about getting a pair of UV-blocking contact lenses in your prescription. These lenses may be worn alongside a non-prescription pair of sunglasses for optimum eye protection
If you have never experienced the crystal clear vision and amazing comfort of prescription polarized sunglasses, you are in for a wonderful surprise when you do. For more information on choosing the right sunglasses, contact our office today.