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Tips to Protect Yourself from Harmful UV Rays
Did you know that research suggests that from Spring through Fall, when the days get longer, the incidence of eye exposure to UV rays is actually greatest earlier and later in the day?
I had no idea.
Several years ago, I became a fanatic about protecting my skin from the sun. I had been out in the sun a lot as a child and even more as I got older.
These days, I do what I can to protect my entire family. We all have hats, sunglasses, sun umbrellas and more. Protecting my eyes is incredibly important to me as well. In fact, we even buy clothing with UV protection in it. My kids also wear rash guards every time they swim plus their swimsuits have UV protection. We do everything we can to stay protected from the sun.
In addition, I wear ACUVUE® contact lenses and I had no idea that these lenses protect eyes from harmful UV rays. I had no idea that something like a contact lens could do that. Here are some quick tips that you can use to protect yourself from harmful UV rays:
PROTECT YOURSELF FROM HARMFUL UV RAYS
We don't leave our house without being fully protected from the sun. Here are a few things that you can do to protect yourself as well:
1. Get the right sunglasses.
Make certain that your glasses over the right amount of protection from the sun. Look for the UV sticker on any sunglasses that you buy.
2. Use sunscreen and reapply.
Many people put sunscreen on but very few remember that it only lasts a few hours. Always re-apply.
3. Have hats on hand.
We always have hats for all five of us in my family available in both of our cars. This helps on particularly bright days.
4. Invest in UV clothing.
If you spend a lot of time out in the sun, you may want to invest in UV clothing. Our children all three wear swimsuits that offer UV protection plus the rash guards do as well. There are also some great lines of clothing that are stylish and protective.
5. Get a good sun umbrella.
I spend a lot of time outdoors at various sporting events both for my kids and professionally organized event.
ABOUT UV BLOCKING CONTACT LENSES
UV blocking contact lenses can provide an important level of additional protection from UV exposure. Not all contact lenses offer UV protection, and, of those that do, not all provide similar absorption levels. ACUVUE® is the only major brand of contact lenses which blocks approximately 97%of UV-B and 81% of UV-A rays as standard across the entire range of its products.*
Knowing this now makes me feel so much more comfortable about wearing ACUVUE®.
*Please note that although 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.
Experts say it is difficult to isolate the exact amount of damage that Ultraviolet Radiation (UV) imposes on the eye over a long period of time. However, a number of studies have shown that the effects of UV radiation are mostly cumulative and may increase the chance of developing eye problems later in life, including cataracts, a leading cause of reduced vision in the United States.
Short-term damage to the eyes may be hard to notice, but over the long-term, the sun can cause irreversible harm to all structures of the eye and surrounding tissue that are left unprotected or under-protected. These conditions may not manifest for years at which point the damage is already done and it is too late to reverse the effects of the sun. That’s why it is important to start protecting eyes from childhood.
CHILDREN, TEENS AT GREATER RISK OF EXPOSURE THAN ADULTS
Younger eyes are more susceptible to exposure to the sun’s harmful rays than adults. Children have larger pupils (allowing more light into their eyes), clearer lenses, and are outside without eye protection much more frequently and for longer periods than most adults. It is estimated that a significant amount of lifetime exposure to UV rays may occur by age 18 and that children’s annual dose of UV radiation is three times that of adults.
ENVIRONMENTAL FACTORS THAT INFLUENCE UV EXPOSURE
Although direct light from the sun itself can be damaging to eyes, reflected ultraviolet (UV) rays from surfaces such as grass, soil, dry sand, water, and snow can also be harmful. UV protection also is important on a cloudy day as the sun's rays can pass through thin clouds, exposing your eyes to harmful UV radiation
SUNGLASSES ALONE SOMETIMES ARE NOT ENOUGH
While most sunglasses can help block UV rays from entering through the lenses, most frame styles do not prevent rays from reaching the eyes from the sides, top, and bottom of the glasses. Hats with brims offer no protection from UV rays reflected up from ground surfaces such as pavement, sand, and water.
ACHIEVING A COMPREHENSIVE MEASURE OF UV PROTECTION
UV absorbing contact lenses are not substitutes for devices like UV-blocking sunglasses as they do not completely cover the eye or the surrounding area. For more comprehensive UV protection, UV-blocking contact lenses should be worn as an added layer of protection in conjunction with high-quality UV-blocking sunglasses and a wide-brimmed hat.
GET MORE INFORMATION ABOUT THE SUN & YOUR EYES
Visit “Fast Facts for Your Health: The Sun & Your Eyes: What You Need to Know” on the ACUVUE® Brand website.
I wrote this review while participating in an Influencer campaign by Mom Central Consulting on behalf of Johnson & Johnson Vision Care, Inc. and received a promotional item from Mom Central to thank me for participating.