Have you ever had a sunburn? If you live on earth, chances are you already know the dangers of the sun and have experienced sunburn. But what about your eyes? Most people don’t realize that while your skin is roasting under warm summer rays, your eyes are also under attack.
How harmful is the sun to your eyes, really?
Let’s be honest – if you look straight into the sun for a second it sucks, but you’re probably not going to immediately go blind. That doesn’t mean continued, indirect exposure isn’t bad for you though! Our sun emits 3 types of UV radiation, 2 of which can negatively affect your eyes. Prolonged, unprotected exposure to these rays can lead to the following injuries:
- Macular Degeneration – retinal damage over time that leads to blindness
- Cataracts – clouding of the eye’s lens
- Pterygium – a pink, non-cancerous growth on the conjunctiva (white) of the eye
- Photokeratitis – burning of the cornea causing pain and temporary vision loss
(Learn more here)
How to prevent sun related damage to eyes
The solution is easy and stylish – sunglasses! Experts recommend wearing 100% UV filtering, tinted and wraparound sunglasses as much as possible. (gotta make sure you don’t get that side sun….) That means even in the winter, when it is overcast, and when you’re looking at water or snow. Have you ever had an awesome day skiing just to come home and find your eyes sore and blurry? That’s actually a sign that you’ve gotten too much UV exposure and have some photokeratitis going on.
This type of damage is only temporary and should go away in a day or two. However, repeated exposure over the course of one’s life can lead to more severe issues and ultimately result in blindness. Wearing sunglasses whenever you’re outdoors is a sure way to protect your eyes and prevent irreversible damage.
How much should I spend on sunglasses?
Sunglasses have become a staple of everyday attire for many people, but lots of us struggle with remembering them or finding the funds to get the trendiest pairs. The good news is whether you buy $5 or $500 glasses, you’ll be equally protected from harm as long as they are 100% UV filtering. (Don’t forget about your pets and kids too – yes, dog shades exist.) Check out our blog 5 Sunglass Brands You Need in Your Life for some of our favorite brands that don’t break the bank!
How many sunglasses are too many?
If you are like some of us here at #NMHQ and break or lose pairs as quickly as you buy them, don’t fret! There are now pairs on the market with replaceable lenses, the ability to float or fold in half, even lenses that will open your brews for you. Cheers! You should absolutely keep a pair in your car, desk, purse or even in your liquor cabinet. ???? The more you have stashed around, the better chance there will be one handy when you need it.
Best Practices to make sunglasses last longer
If you do splurge on a higher quality pair, or just want to make any old pair last longer, it’s important to properly care for your sunnies.
- Invest in a hard bodied carrying case – this is the best way to protect against cracks and scratches when your glasses are not in use.
- NEVER clean them with a t-shirt. Don’t do it. Ever. This just pushes gunk around and can scratch your lenses very easily.
- Grab some Nano Magic Lens Cleaner and keep it wherever is most convenient for you (we often suggest center consoles of cars and kitchen drawers.)
With proper care and storage, even the cheapest glasses can last a long time and save you a lot of trouble down the road!