The Importance of Wearing Sunglasses Year-Round

Sunglasses tend to give us confidence when we wear them. We put them on to complete an outfit, and we choose a lens that will keep the sun out of our eyes when driving, playing sports, or simply laying on the beach.

You might notice that many people wear sunglass all year round, and some even wear them inside. So why do people wear sunglasses all year round when the sun isn’t always so strong? Wearing sunglasses all the time has proven to be helpful for people with some underlying health conditions that cause sensitivity to light, but for others putting sunglasses on is simply for stylish reasons. 

And if you live in California, Texas, Florida, Arizona, or Nevada wearing sunglasses all year round is important to protecting your eyes from the sun. 

But do all sunglasses protect your eyes? The answer is simple. No

Protection from the wind, debris, and harmful ultraviolet rays is the main type of protection for your eyes and sunglasses can provide this.

Why are Sunglasses Important?

Wearing sunglasses is more than just about looking good. One of the most important benefits of wearing sunglasses is that sunglasses protect your eyes from ultraviolet (UV) light and the harmful effects it can have on your eyelids, cornea, lens, and retina. 

Here are just some of the reasons why you should need to protect your eyes from the sun,

It prevents cataracts

Cataracts are a condition of the eyes that cause the lens of your eye to become cloudy and experience serious vision impairment. Your vision may become blurry or double. This condition develops slowly as you age. One of the biggest contributors to this disease is exposure to the sun’s rays.

It protects your eyes from growths
UV exposure can cause noncancerous growths called pinguecula and pterygium. These conditions can lead to vision impairment if left untreated. Pinguecula is a yellow bump on the white of the eye. Pterygium is a fleshy growth that can spread to the cornea if not treated and challenge your vision.  

It discourages macular degeneration

Macular degeneration develops if you are exposed to too much UV rays. This is a degenerative condition that causes a distortion or loss of vision. 

To keep photokeratitis away
Photokeratitis is sunburn on the cornea, causing discomfort, blurred vision, and increased light sensitivity. Some people experience temporary vision loss. This temporary condition can be avoided by wearing sunglasses.

What is the Importance of Wearing Sunglasses All Year Long?

Every Californian, Texan, and Floridian needs a good pair of sunglasses that provide the necessary UV protection from the scorching sun. Whether you choose California sunglasses style, retro aviators, classic wayfarers, quirky new silhouettes or prefer wearing sunglasses over glasses you’ll get all of the benefits of protection from the sun. ​​ 

But can wearing sunglasses damage your eyes? 

Wearing the wrong type of sunglasses can cause damage to your eyes. If you are exposed to certain wavelengths of light you can potentially damage several parts of your eye. This may lead to long-term problems and medical conditions. Wearing cheap sunglasses or sunglasses that do not have good light filters may damage your eyes over time.

There are plenty of reputable sunglass companies that have quality sunglasses that aid in protecting your eyes. And it’s always important that you are choosing tints, and UV protection based on the conditions you’ll be wearing them in.

Why are the Sun’s Rays Dangerous?

The sun's rays contain ultraviolet rays. This UV exposure comes with a risk of many serious health issues including potentially blinding eye diseases. This is why it’s essential that you are wearing sunglasses to protect your eyes.

However, not all sunglasses are designed to protect your eyes and therefore are not created equally. There are so many different types of sunglasses that serve different purposes. Choosing to provide protection from the sun's rays is the only way to reduce the risks of eye diseases or getting a sunburn on your cornea. 

When choosing sunglasses it’s essential to understand how the tint darkness or shade of your lenses affect your vision, and that neither protect against UV light.

When investing in a pair of sunglasses for daily wear you should always choose lenses that will provide at least 99% UV protection. UV light sunglasses offer the highest level of protection by preventing even the tiniest UV rays. UV protection does not have anything to do with the color of the lens itself.

The sun’s rays can cause severe damage to your eyes and lead to decreased vision, as well as cause dryness, wrinkles, and loss of elasticity around the eyes. The skin on your eyelid is the thinnest layer of skin on your entire body. 

Be sure that you are purchasing sunglasses that protect your eyes from the sun with UV protection. 

How do sunglasses protect your eyes from UV rays?

UV protection creates a barrier that reflects the UV rays and prevents them from entering your eyes. Depending on the amount of protection will determine how much ultraviolet rays get through the barrier. Sunglasses work similarly to how sunscreen works depending on the SPF that you put on will determine how much protection your skin has from burning.  It’s recommended that your shades provide at least 99% protection from the UV rays, this is equivalent to a UV 400 protection.

Can I look at the sun with sunglasses?

Wearing sunglasses will not necessarily protect you from the direct sun, even if they have a UV protection of 400. 

What Happens if You Don't Wear Sunglasses?

When you don't wear sunglasses and your eyes are exposed to the sun you are putting the health of your eyes at risk. Not wearing sunglasses has many disadvantages and puts you at an increased risk of damaging your eyes and their health. Keeping your eyes well-protected from anything that nature throws at it prevents the inevitable from happening.

Increased risk of eye diseases
Sunglasses block out those harmful UV rays and prevent the risk of developing a handful of eye diseases. Some of these serious health conditions include photokeratitis, pterygia, pinguecula, macular degeneration, and cataracts. And direct sunlight onto the eyelids can also lead to basal cell carcinoma which is a form of skin cancer.

Increased risk of sun damage to children
Your children’s eyes are more sensitive to UV rays than yours. This means they are more likely to suffer from damage which may lead to vision problems long-term. If your child is spending a lot of time outside be sure to have them wear sunglasses to prevent damage.

Risk of sun glare while driving
Sun glares are one of the major causes of accidents on the road. By wearing sunglasses when you are driving you’ll reduce the glare of environmental light and improve your range of vision.

Prevents debris
Sunglasses and specifically wrap-around sunglasses help to shield your eyes against wind and debris. If you’re riding a motorcycle it’s important that you keep your eyes free from dust and other irritants. 

Benefits of wearing sunglasses indoors

Light is one of the leading causes of physical discomfort and can be avoided by wearing sunglasses everywhere you go. Most people take their sunglasses off once they get inside, but if you suffer from migraine headaches, dry eyes, or have had brain injuries there are benefits to keeping them on indoors. 

There are many people who suffer from migraines, and incandescent bulbs used indoors can increase the pain associated with a migraine. Keeping your sunglasses on will ease some of the pain.

If you have suffered from a concussion it's likely that since then you may have developed problems with glare and bright lights. Wearing sunglasses indoors and outdoors will help this issue until you fully recover from the injury. 

Sunglass Protection Rating

UV rays have a wavelength of 10-400 nanometers. The higher the number the more protection it has against ultraviolet rays. The highest rating for UV shades is 400 and this will provide 100% UV protection blocking up to 400um wavelengths. 

Reputable sunglass brands will have the protection rating listed on the sunglasses or tag. 

Best Type of Sunglasses to Protect Eyes

When searching for the best sunglasses you want to choose sunglasses with the highest level of protection from both UVA and UVB light. Direct sunlight that is too bright can cause eye discomfort, and as we age our pupils grow larger. This causes increased sensitivity to light. 

Polarized lenses are a great type of lens for driving. They reduce glare and provide protection if you’ve had refractive eye surgery. 

If you have macular degeneration or diabetic retinopathy choosing an amber or brown lens will help you see better. These lenses should also offer UV protection.

At ShadyVEU we have a huge selection of sunglasses to choose from that offer the protection that you need whether you're looking to reduce the glare when driving in the car or playing sports, looking for glasses to help minimize your migraines, or simply want to keep the UV rays out of your eyes while laying on the beach.


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