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Determining the Best Sunglasses for Your Eye Health

With summer fast approaching, you may be searching for a new pair of sunglasses. Though style is always an important factor when it comes to finding the right shades to fit your look, it shouldn’t be your only consideration.

You may enjoy the warmer weather and greener lawns, but the summer sun also increases your exposure to ultraviolet (UV) light, which may affect vision and eye health. 

As one of the largest eye care centers in Santa Fe, New Mexico, our team at Accent Vision Specialists understands how important it is to find the right pair of sunglasses. Our eye care specialists want to help you find the best sunglasses that fit your style and protect your eye health.

Choose sunglasses with UV protection

UV protection is the most important thing to consider when purchasing a new pair of shades. You’re probably aware that UV rays from the sun are harmful to your skin, but you may not know that they can also harm your eyes. 

Excessive exposure to UV radiation causes both short- and long-term effects, including photokeratitis — known as "sunburn of the eye.” Longer, more intense exposure could put you at risk of developing cataracts or macular degeneration

You don’t have to spend a lot to get UV protection, according to the Cleveland Clinic, but you want to make sure you purchase your sunglasses from a reputable manufacturer. Choose sunglasses with the highest UV protection available. 

Find a pair that fits

Finding a pair of sunglasses that fits well is also important. If your glasses are too loose or tight, UV rays may seep through the openings and damage your skin or eyes. A good pair of sunglasses should cover your entire eye and fit your nose and ears so they stay in place. 

For the best protection, consider wrap around sunglasses. In addition to full protection from the sun, wrap around sunglasses also protect your eyes from wind, debris, and allergens. 

Select the right level of darkness

Dark lenses don't mean better protection from the sun. In fact, darker lenses cause your pupils to open more. If your shades don’t offer full UV protection, you run the risk of letting additional light in, increasing risk of eye damage and vision changes. So, always check that your sunglasses offer 100% protection against UV rays, no matter the shade of the lens.

To prevent significant color distortion, choose brown, grey, green, or copper colored lenses for your sunglasses. 

Look for sunglasses with polarized lenses

Sun glare while driving or when out on the golf course affects visibility and may lead to eye fatigue. To minimize glare during the bright, sunny, summer days, select sunglasses with polarized lenses.

However, your polarized lenses don’t protect from UV rays, so you need to make sure when looking for the best sunglasses for eye health that your shades offer both polarized lenses and UV protection. These lenses may also cause distortion patterns when looking at or through glass or polycarbonate materials, so for helmeted motorcycle riders with face shields, they may not be the best choice. Polarized lenses are best for reducing glare off reflective flat surfaces like water, so they are great for fishing.

Prescription sunglasses for vision correction

If you wear prescription eyeglasses for vision correction, you may benefit from a pair of prescription sunglasses. We offer many styles and shades to fit your fashion needs and protect your eyes.

Eye health is important for overall health. Finding the right pair of sunglasses protects your eyes from damaging rays of the sun and may preserve vision and prevent eye conditions.

We’d love to help you find the right pair of sunglasses to meet your eye health needs. Contact us today to schedule your eye exam. 

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