Sunglasses - PIH Health

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Published on July 06, 2017


Girl wearing large sunglasses

Girl wearing large sunglassesYou may be surprised to find that wearing sunglasses offers these health benefits.

Sure, sunglasses may be the ultimate accessory to pull off a summer outfit or to make you look confident. But donning a pair of shades is important for reasons that go far beyond being stylish or making you look cool. Sunglasses can help keep your eyes, and the skin surrounding them, healthy.

Here are some reasons you’ll want to grab those shades before you head out the door:

  • Protect eyes from UV rays. One of the most important benefits of wearing sunglasses is that they protect your eyes and the delicate skin surrounding them from the damaging ultraviolet rays of the sun. UV exposure can lead to cataracts and worsen symptoms of glaucoma. Additionally, nearly 10% of skin cancers are found near the eyes. Choose glasses that fully cover your eyes and make sure they have 100% UVA and UVB protection.
  • Protect eyes from debris. If you’re participating in a sport or other activity that can be potentially damaging to your eyes, it’s recommended you wear activity-appropriate safety glasses or goggles. On an everyday basis, wearing sunglasses can help protect your eyes from debris flying through the air, such as dust and sand, or potential dangers, such as a low-hanging tree branch on the sidewalk. These can scratch eyes or cause irritation.
  • Protect eyes from wind. When your eyes are exposed to wind, it can cause irritation and may lead to dry-eye syndrome. If you’re prone to dry eyes or are irritated by windy, dry and dusty environments, select a pair of wraparound sunglasses for maximum wind protection.
  • Protect eyes from glare. Not only do sunglasses help you see better when it’s bright outside, but by cutting down on the glare, they also lessen the amount you have to squint. Squinting can lead to headaches, eye strain and fatigue, as well as the development of fine lines in the skin around your eyes over time. It’s also harder to see clearly when you squint, which can lead to accidents, especially when driving. Polarized sunglasses provide maximum glare protection.

The information in Healthy Living Online is for educational purposes only.  It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice.  The reader should always consult his or her healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation, or if they have any questions regarding a medical condition or treatment plan.

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