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Snag some shades--fast!

 
Sunglasses are a super cute part of any outfit, but they’re much more than just an accessory. They keep your eyes safe from all kinds of nasty problems that can pop up if your peepers get a li’l too much sun. In a recent study, the Vision Council found that close to one third of Americans don’t wear sunglasses. Ever. And 20 percent don’t think that they’re at risk from sun exposure, which is pretty crazy considering how much the ozone has deteriorated in recent years. So what are the real facts on how the sun affects our eyes?

 

 

Damage Control

Mom said not to stare at the sun because you could go blind. Well, even if you’re not starin’, blindness is still a risk. After just a day on the beach without shades, you can get a painful burn on the surface of your eye, kind of like sunburn on your skin. And if you do that too many times, you might end up with cataracts, which blur your vision. According to the EPA, 22.3 million Americans suffer from cataracts, so their eyes’ lenses are clouded. Another eye issue that could come as a result of too much sun exposure is pterygium, which is a non-cancerous growth that pops up in the corner of your eye. After a while, it can mess up your vision and might need surgery to fix. And you can even get skin cancer on your eyelids and in the surrounding areas.

 

Shopping Trip!

Well, now you’ve definitely gotta go get some new sunglasses. But which kind are the best? Any that block 99 to 100 percent of both UV-A and UV-B rays are good, and there are plenty of those that aren’t super-expensive. Also, get the biggest shades you can find because the more they cover, the better. That’ll save you from skin cancer, and it’ll cut down on the rays that sneak around the edges of the shades to get to your eyes.

 

I Wear My Sunglasses at Night

OK, you don’t really have to wear your sweet shades when the sun isn’t around if you don’t want to. But be careful because even if you think there aren’t enough rays pokin’ through those clouds to hurt you, they can still do some serious damage. Sunshine reflects off of water, snow, sand and pavement, making it strong even on darker days.

 

Check out the Vision Council’s entire report here. What style of shades are your go-tos?

 
 

 

BY CARRIE RUPPERT ON 8/21/2012 2:16:00 PM

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