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Protect your eyes and stay safe in the sun!

Posted On 22 October 2012

Protect your eyes and stay safe in the sun!

If you are lucky enough to be going abroad this year, alongside packing your suntan lotion, travellers cheques and a good book, have you stopped to consider what eyewear you’ll need to keep safe in the sun?

Protecting your eyes from UV rays is essential. We are all aware of the impact the sun has on skin, but tend to be less clued up about our eyes. Sunglasses are not just a great fashion accessory; they serve the very functional purpose of filtering out harmful UV rays and protecting your eyes from damage.

Unfortunately there are a lot of sunglasses available which do not offer the levels of protection required to keep your eyes safe and determining which pairs offer protection and which don’t, can prove tricky. Luckily Tesco Opticians is here to help you buy the right sunglasses.

• What does UV Exposure do to your eyes?

UV radiation is proven to damage cells it comes into contact with. Unlike skin cells which are under constant renewal, the lens of the eye is never replaced, meaning that any damage caused by over exposure to the sun cannot be repaired. UV rays damage the proteins in the lens of the eye, which can play a role in the development of cataracts. Exposure to UV has also been linked to age related macular degeneration.

• Who needs sunglasses?

In short, everyone who is out in the sun and exposed to UV rays for a prolonged period should wear sunglasses. This means children and babies, as well as adults, and isn’t just limited to hot climates either. So from beach resorts to ski resorts, if you are expecting to be outside in a sunny environment, you need to consider your eye protection.

• Is a hat enough?

Wide brim hats are great for reducing glare, but do not shield UV rays. Sunglasses are the only real guaranteed protection. Contact lenses can offer some level of protection against UV rays, but as they only cover part of the eye, some areas are still left exposed. 

• Which lenses offer UV protection?

You need to aim for 100% UV protection when buying sunglasses. Polycarbonate and polarized lenses, available from Opticians, will be guaranteed to offer this level of protection. Fashion glasses from high street stores or online may not always be able to guarantee this same level of coverage. To check, ask what material the lenses are made from; if they are triacetate the chance are they’ll only give 40% protection. 

• What should I look out for when buying sunglasses?

The main thing to look out for when buying sunglasses anywhere outside an opticians is the CE Mark, the British Standard Mark or a UV400 label. These logos should only be used by accredited manufacturers, giving you peace of mind that your sunglasses offer a high enough level of protection to keep your eyes safe. 

So now you’re al little bit more clued up on buying the right pair of sunglasses to protect your eyes, you can enjoy choosing the latest style to compliment your holiday wardrobe! It’s not often that you can look stylish whilst taking precautions against a serious health risk, but sunglasses are the fashionable way to protect your eyes and look great.

View our range of sunglasses, all of which offer 100% UV protection.

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