I have a confession to make. I am a sunglasses addict. Not quite as bad as my shoe addiction, but my sunglasses collection does give my shoe collection a run for their money.
I’ve passed that on to Princess Nagger from a very early age as well – I even bought her those specialty baby sunglasses because they were cool (and they happened to have UV protection):
She was stylin’, wasn’t she? When she outgrew them, I followed up with cute and fashionable shades to protect her eyes from harmful rays.
Since she has beautiful blue eyes, she tends to be sensitive to bright lights. My eyes are hazel, and I also have that same sensitivity to light. Even when she’d be goofing off at home or at a friends house, if there were sunglasses available, she’d wear them just for fun:
When she was 4-1/2, we went on a family vacation to the Caribbean – somehow I completely forgot to pack even one of the many pairs of sunglasses she had acquired by then. We had to search through the sales huts the locals had set up on the beach to try to find a pair that were her size. We finally found a pair at the very last hut, and she was wisely never without them:
Whenever I’m buying sunglasses, I always check to make sure they have UV Protection. As you know, UV rays cause sunburns and skin cancer, but did you know they can also do great harm to your eyeballs? I didn’t realize that without proper protection, you can actually sunburn your eyes.
Protecting your eyes from the sun is very important. Did you know that while direct sunlight can be extremely damaging to your eyes, reflected UV rays from water, grass or even sand, can be even more dangerous? I always knew I burn easier when on or near water because of the reflection of the sun, but I never thought about grass or sand being a reflective source.
Since I do have sensitivity to bright light, I’m rarely without sunglasses when spending any time outdoors – but often times I would buy sunglasses for the fashion statement aspect rather than the protection aspect. I won’t be making that mistake again.
I didn’t realize that long term excessive UV exposure to your eyes can also cause things like photokeratitis, cataracts, age-related macular degeneration and cancer of the eye and surrounding skin. My dad wasn’t a big sunglasses wearer, which could explain his need to have cataract surgery within the last couple of years. Hopefully that won’t be in my future!
I’m scheduled to have my eyes checked in a few weeks to order new glasses and contacts – I always get the transition lenses so when I’m out shopping and don’t want to bother switching from glasses to sunglasses, I can offer my eyeballs at least some protection.
I’m also due for ordering new contacts and was happy to find out that the ACUVUE® OASYS® Brand Contact Lenses I like do offer UV protection for an added layer.
And for those who prefer a daily disposable contact lens, 1-DAY ACUVUE® TruEye® Contact Lenses, offer the highest level of UV-blocking available in a contact lens. I might look into getting those myself.
Note: UV-blocking contact lenses are beneficial in helping to protect against harmful UV rays entering into the eye, long-term clinical studies have not been done to show that they directly reduce the risk of any specific eye disease or condition. That is why they should always be worn in conjunction with high-quality UV-blocking sunglasses and a wide-brimmed hat.
If you’re interested in learning more about healthy eyes and UV protection, go check out the Eye Health Center.
Do you wear sunglasses for the fashion effect, or do they have UV protection?
Note: I participated in a campaign on behalf of Mom Central Consulting on behalf of HealthyWomen and VISTAKON® Division of Johnson & Johnson Vision Care, Inc. and received a promotional item from Mom Central to thank me for taking the time to participate. As usual, all opinions are my own and not influenced by outside sources. See my disclosure policy here.