Slathering on the sunscreen to protect your skin is important, but it’s just as important to protect your eyes from the sun’s damaging rays. Even low amounts of exposure to the sun and its ultraviolet (UV) rays can damage the eyes. The effects of such exposure are cumulative and can be seen in an increased occurrence of chronic vision problems like macular degeneration and premature cataracts. Since sunglasses should be worn year round, Access Eye always carry a large selection of high quality sunglasses.

Sun protection options for eyeglass wearers include prescription sunglasses, clip-on or magnetic sunglasses that attach to regular glasses, and photochromics like Transitions — prescription lenses that darken automatically when UV rays are present. These lenses block out 100 percent of UV radiation automatically. They remain clear indoors, but automatically block UV rays outdoors by becoming dark when dangerous rays are present. The brighter the sun, the darker the lenses get. The lenses automatically become clear again when you come indoors. These lenses are compatible with anti reflective coatings.

Sun protection is also important on cloudy days, when up to 80 percent of UV radiation passes through the clouds, and at high elevations. Make sure to select sunglasses that block 100 percent of UVA and UVB radiation. Polarized lenses add the benefit of removing reflected glare.

Protection from the sun is especially important for children and teenagers, since 80 percent of an individual’s lifetime sun exposure occurs before age 18. Make sure children and teens wear good quality sunglasses that block out UVA and UVB rays.