Summer is the season of fun, but along with hot, sunny days and the opportunity for adventure, it also presents a range of new hazards that have the potential to affect any part of our bodies, including our eyes. Without proper protection, our eyes could be subjected to everything from sunburn to traumatic injuries. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to maintain your long term eye health and vision.
Here are our top tips on how to protect your eyes this summer.
Experts agree that wearing sunglasses is one of the most effective ways to protect your eyes from the harmful effects of the sun this summer. However, with countless styles to choose from, finding a pair of sunglasses can be a little overwhelming. One of the most important things to be aware of is that not all sunglasses offer the same level of protection against UVA and UVB. To protect your eyes this summer, look for a tag or label that shows that your chosen sunglasses have been checked an offer 100% protection against UV light.
Some things to bear in mind when choosing your sunglasses:
- Darker tints don’t mean better protection. They may be more effective at shielding your eyes from brightness but be sure to still choose a variety with a label stating that they offer 100% UV protection.
- The style of your sunglasses matters too. Oversized and close-fitting lenses offer maximum coverage, while wraparound frames are particularly effective at blocking out UV light.
- Some types of sunglasses are particularly good if you participate in outdoor activities and you want to keep your eyes safe. Your sunglasses provider will be happy to help you to find the right style for your sport.
Summer tends to mean that we spend more time outdoors. Unfortunately, there are just as many outdoor activities that could potentially damage your eyes if you don’t give them the right protection – and we don’t just mean UV damage. Everything from swimming in heavily-chlorinated pools to BBQ smoke or fast-moving baseballs can pose a risk to your eyes. Be aware of the potential hazards and remember to protect your eyes using the appropriate safety eyewear where necessary. If you aren’t sure what protective eyewear you need, don’t be afraid to ask your eye doctor for advice.
While sunglasses are the most effective way of protecting eyes from damage caused by UV radiation, studies have found that wearing a hat is also very valuable, provided you choose a wide-brim or baseball cap variety. This is because they extend out over the top of the brow, shielding the sun from entering from the top of your sunglasses and reaching your eyes.
Lots of people suffer from allergies, many of which are particularly prevalent in the summer months. Allergies can affect us in many ways and for some people, it is their eyes that suffer the most. They can become red, swollen, itchy, watering, and painful as their bodies release histamines to fight the allergens causing the allergic reaction. If you suffer from allergies that affect your eyes, you are probably all too aware of the negative impact that they can have on the quality of your day to day life. However, by being allergen-aware, it is possible to limit the effects that they have on you. Your eye care professional and the family doctor will be able to advise you on the best allergy preventatives and treatments available.
Accidents and injuries can occur at any time, and they can affect any part of the body, including our eyes. For this reason, it is invaluable to have eye care supplies in our first aid kits – both at home and take out with us when we go away from the property. It is particularly important to pack a first aid kit that contains eyecare supplies when going to do activities that could put our eyes at risk, even if you are wearing the appropriate safety eyewear, and on overnight stays such as camping. Some of the key eye care supplies that you should include are:
- Eyewash or saline solution
- Plastic or cardboard eye bath
- Eyewash pods for eye irrigation
- Eye bandages
- Sterile dressing
- Eyeshields or plastic cups to cover the eye if something gets lodged in it
Remember to replace any items that you might use, and to check that any products like sterile wash/saline solution remains within the use-by date.
For more tips on how to protect your eyes this summer, please don’t hesitate to speak to our experienced and discreet eye care team.