Sunglasses are a great fashion accessory, but their most important job is to protect your eyes from the sun’s ultraviolet (UV) rays. Some of the sun’s effects on the eyes include:
- Cataracts, a clouding of the eye’s lens that can blur vision. An estimated 20% of cases are caused by extended UV exposure.
- Macular degeneration, resulting from damage to the retina that destroys central vision. Macular degeneration is the leading cause of blindness in the United States.
- Pterygium, a tissue growth over the white part of the surface of the eye that can alter the curve of the eyeball, causing astigmatism.
When purchasing sunglasses, look for ones that block out 99 to 100% of both UVA and UVB radiation, so you can keep your vision sharp and eyes healthy. A hat offers great protection, too!