beaumont vision pdx eyecare blog
August 11, 2018

UV Radiation and Your Eyes: Protecting Your Vision From the Sun

Don’t Forget About Your Eyes When It Comes to your Summer Sun Protection

summer sun eye protection

As we hurdle into summer, it’s important to think of our eyes before spending hours out in the sun. In the same way that you religiously wear sunscreen and sun hats in order to protect your skin from the sun’s harmful UV rays, you should protect your eyes, too.

Whenever you plan your summer vacations and sunny excursions, keep in mind that the sun can have a profound and dangerous effect on our eyes. Exposure to bright sunlight has been proven to cause cataracts and cancer in the eyes. UV radiation can damage the cornea and lens in addition to the surface of the eye.

Fortunately, there are many ways to protect the eyes from the sun so that we can still have fun in the sun all summer long. Check out these tips and tricks to make sure that your eyes are protected from the sun while you’re enjoying your time outdoors this summer. Wearing proper eye protection can save your eyes from the harmful damage caused by UV radiation.

Wear Sunglasses

Sunglasses are the best way to protect your eyes from the sun’s damaging rays. Be sure to wear shades that have full ultraviolet protection. Your sunglasses should block UVA and UVB rays. Remember to still wear sunglasses even if you wear UV blocking contact lenses.

The best way to fully protect your eyes is to wear wrap-around sunglasses that sit close to your face, so the sun’s rays can’t come in through the sides. Remember that dark lens sunglasses don’t necessarily provide better protection—you need UV blocking lenses.

Sit in the Shade

Try not to sit in direct sunlight when the sun is at its strongest between 10am and 2pm. Give your eyes a break between these hours by sitting under a beach umbrella or spending some time indoors.

Staring directly at the sun can burn a hole through the retina, even if you’re wearing UV blocking sunglasses. Sun damage to the eyes is cumulative, meaning that light damage to the eyes as a child can cause greater damage later in life. Kids often spend more time outdoors during the summer than adults, so make sure their eyes are properly protected and consider calling them inside for a lunch or snack break when the sun is directly overhead.

Always Wear Sunscreen

While you may be used to lathering sunscreen on your arms and legs, don’t forget to also get your eyelids and under your eyes with at least SPF 30. If regular broad spectrum SPF stings your eyes, try a sensitive skin sunscreen.

Many makeups and foundations now have an SPF so you can add an extra layer of protection when you put your makeup on every morning. Look for eye creams and moisturizers with an SPF at your department store makeup counter or drug store so that you can protect parts of the face that may be more sensitive.

Protecting Your Eyes From UV Radiation Is an Investment in Your Eyesight

Protecting your eyes from harmful UV radiation now will help to ensure that your eyesight stays healthy in the future. Following these tips will allow you to protect your eyes while enjoying the sun this summer.

July 25, 2018

How Do You Really Know When It’s Time to Get Glasses?

More Than Half of the Country Wears Glasses; So When Do You Know if They’re Right for You?

getting glasses

According to Popular Science, over 40% of the U.S. population suffers from myopia, or nearsightedness. According to statistics published by CBS, 61% of the U.S. population uses some form of corrective lenses. A higher proportion of elderly and aging people wear glasses compared to people under the age of forty. So how can you tell if it’s time for you to get a pair glasses?

If you are in need of glasses, you may experience eye strain, frequent headaches, and trouble reading. Regular trips to the eye doctor aren’t just for people with eye diagnosed eye problems—getting an eye exam at least once a year will help you understand if your vision is changing, and what steps to take to ensure good eye health.

If you experience any of the following symptoms, make an appointment with your eye doctor to find out if it’s time to get a pair of glasses.

1) Blurred Vision

If you need glasses, you may experience blurred vision. You may be nearsighted if you find it difficult to see an object that is far away. If you have trouble making out your friends as they approach you from ten feet away, for example, then you may be nearsighted.

Farsightedness is when your vision is blurred for objects up close. If you have trouble reading a book that is right in front of you, you may be farsighted. Schedule an eye exam if your blurred vision occurs even when you are well rested and hydrated.

2) Frequent Headaches

Eye strain occurs when the small muscles in the eye must work extra hard in order to compensate for failed communication between the cornea and lens. This can result in headaches. Eye strain and squinting can also cause headaches.

If you get regular headaches and worry that they may be caused by your eyesight, make an appointment with your eye doctor.

3) Trouble Seeing at Night

When our eyesight becomes weaker with age, it becomes naturally more difficult to see at night. But this can be dangerous if you regularly drive at night or do other activities in the dark.

Night blindness is also referred to as “nyctalopia,” which can be caused by eye conditions like myopia, cataracts, and retinitis pigmentosa (when dark pigment collects in the retina and creates tunnel vision).

4) Difficulty Adjusting to Light or Dark

As we age, our eyesight can be affected in many ways. In dim and dark light, the iris widens in order to let in as much light as possible. In bright light, the iris contracts in order to restrict the amount of light going in. As we age, the iris may have trouble expanding when adjusting to brighter conditions.

While difficulty adjusting to light or dark conditions can be annoying, it can also be dangerous—especially when driving. If your iris cannot adjust to the light of the headlights from a passing car, be sure to make an appointment with your eye doctor.

Regular Trips to the Eye Doctor Make All the Difference

Don’t wait until you’ve been suffering from one or more of these symptoms for months. Make an appointment with your eye doctor to prevent further strain, damage, and danger to your eye and your surroundings.

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