Did you know that July is UV Awareness Month? The American Academy of Ophthalmology has deemed July as the month we should spread awareness about UV safety, especially as it applies to eye safety.
Interestingly, the AAO states the usual sun protection facts that we all SHOULD know by now:
- Wear sunscreen with SPF of 15 or higher (I recommend 30 or higher)
- Wear long sleeves and hats
- Avoid being in the sun during the peak hours of 10AM to 2PM.
- Wear sunscreen, even on cloudy days.
- Keep an eye on changes to your skin.
- Wear UV Protective sunglasses.
- Always wear sunglasses that block 100% of UVA and UVB rays. Sunglasses without UV protection may shade the eyes, but actually cause the pupils to dilate, thus allowing more harmful rays. (In other words, merely shading the eyes could cause more damage if you don’t add the UV protection!)
- Wear a brimmed hat along with the proper sunglasses for additional protection.
- Choose wrap-around sunglasses to protect the eyes and skin around the eyes. (Many people apply sunscreen very lightly near the eyes (it burns!), so sunglasses are equally important to protect the skin around the eyes as they are to protect the eyes.)
- Be aware that while some contact lenses may offer UV protection, they cannot protect the entire eye and the skin around it.
- Choose sunglasses made of unbreakable polycarbonate, especially for children and those that lead active lifestyles.
- Ask your doctor is any medication you’re taking may cause increased sensitivity to light.
- Skin Cancer
- Macular Degeneration (the leading cause of blindness in the country!)
The next time you lather on the sunscreen, don’t forget your UV protective sunglasses. Protect your peepers!