Posted May 28, 2013
Is it important for children and teens to wear protective sunglasses when spending time outdoors?
Yes, reports the Children’s Vision Coalition, and here are four key reasons why:
- Kids’ eyes are more vulnerable to the sun’s harmful ultraviolet (UV) rays; the lenses of their eyes are more transparent and not able to filter out UV and high-energy visible (HEV) radiation rays.
- Kids tend to spend more time outdoors than adults, so their risk for getting a sunburn to their eyes is higher (called photokeratitis); experts believe that by age 18, many teens will have received at least half of their lifetime exposure to the sun.
- Medical researchers believe long-term exposure to UV rays could contribute to serious eye conditions, such as cancer of the eyelids, retinal problems or cataracts.
- Damage from the sun is cumulative over time; scientists believe there is a link between extensive exposure to UV rays and the development of macular degeneration later in life.
Before purchasing protective sunglasses, make sure they are designed to block 100 percent of UV rays and absorb most HEV rays. For optimum sun protection, select a pair that covers the sides of the eyes.
Learn more about sun exposure to the eyes and tips on selecting protective sunglasses by linking to ameritasinsight blogs and other articles: