Top 10 Tips for Summer Eye Protection

May 3, 2022

Protect your eyes from the bright summer sun

Summertime means more time outside which means more sun exposure. We all know we should be wearing sunscreen to protect our skin, but we need to protect our eyes too! The Rosenberg School of Optometry has some tips for taking care of your eyes over the summer.

Here Are 10 Reasons Why

1. UV Ray Exposure

Sunglasses are an excellent tool to protect our eyes from harmful UV rays (specifically UV-B rays). Prolonged UV exposure can lead to retinal problems, including macular degeneration, and it can contribute to cataracts and glaucoma progression. Sunglasses with 100% UV protection are best at blocking those harmful rays.

2. Extra Sunlight

Sunglasses can also improve visual clarity and comfort when outdoors. Our eyes are naturally light-sensitive, so being exposed to extra sunlight can cause eye strain, headaches and even migraines. Protecting our eyes will help improve our overall comfort when outside.

3. Visual Clarity

Some sunglasses can even improve visual clarity. Polarized sunglasses are created in such a way that they can significantly reduce glare and reflections when outdoors, ultimately helping you see more clearly.

4. Reflection of Sunlight

Watch out for bodies of water and mountains of snow! Incoming sunlight can be reflected as much as 50-90% off snow and ice, so wearing sunglasses with UV protection will help protect your eyes, and polarized lenses can help you see more clearly since they minimize glare that can be excessively reflected off lakes, oceans or snow.

5. Eyelid Damage

The eyelid skin is the thinnest skin on our bodies and is extremely susceptible to sun damage. Wearing sunglasses and hats can help prevent that thin skin from becoming burned by the sun. Additionally, up to 10% of all skin cancer is found on the eyelid, so protecting our lids from harmful rays is very important.

6. Transitional Lenses

Options for shades include standard sunglasses with UV protection and/or polarization, but you can also try photochromatic lenses (or transition lenses) that change from normal clear lenses when indoors to darker tinted lenses when outside exposed to the sunlight. These are great for people who already wear glasses and need to wear prescription sunglasses.

7. Airborne Particles

Sunglasses can also help protect your eyes from debris swirling around you in the air when you are outside. Having sunglasses can help protect your eyes from wind, dust, sand, dirt and other dangerous airborne particles that could potentially irritate your eyes or even scratch your cornea.

8. Sport Sunglasses

If you are going to be playing impact sports, then you can consider certain lens materials for better sunglasses or eye protection. Polycarbonate material is the standard for sports glasses and goggles, and Trivex is another lens material with superior impact resistance, optical clarity and scratch resistance.

9. Tinted Glasses

Tinted glasses in specific colors other than black can provide additional benefits that can improve sports performance.

  • The vermillion or rose-colored glasses really do make the world seem brighter – they provide excellent clarity in low-light situations, and they can enhance contrast. They also enhance the visibility of objects against blue and green backgrounds.
  • The Brown/Grey/or Green lenses do an outstanding job of reducing glare without distorting colors. They are also very effective in bright conditions.
  • The yellow/gold/or amber lenses provide some brightness protection but are more effective in moderately bright to low-level light conditions. These work very efficiently during dawn and dusk. They can provide strong depth perception and are very efficient under hazy lighting.

10. Comprehensive Eye Exams

Additionally, summertime may provide a little extra free time! Comprehensive eye exams are recommended annually to examine ocular health and monitor for visual changes. Athletes can always benefit from any competitive edge and making sure that the eyes are healthy and are seeing clearly is the first step. Vision enhancement training, or sports vision training, is also available in certain areas and can help improve an athlete’s visual function and visual processing by training skills like depth perception, reaction time, spatial awareness, focus flexibility, tracking, concentration and anticipation/timing.

Schedule an Appointment at an Eye Clinic

Visit one of our UIW eye clinics this summer for a comprehensive eye exam.

Make an Appointment