Is it Important To Wear Sunglasses?
Ultraviolet Radiation Despite the fact that the sun is over 93 million miles away, its rays also pose important health and ocular dangers. The principal danger posed by the sun is in the form of ultraviolet radiation, or for short, UV radiation. UV radiation is a component of solar energy, but it can also be given off by artificial sources like welding machines, tanning beds and lasers. You are probably aware of the danger posed by UV radiation to your skin, but you may not realize that. exposure to UV radiation can harm your eyes and affect your vision as well. UV radiation is divided into several classes: UV-A, UV-B and UV-C. UV-C radiation originating from the solar system is absorbed by the ozone layer in the earth’s atmosphere and does not present any threat. This is in contrast to man made sources of UV-C, such as electric welding arcs, which are very harmful to the eyes if you do not use proper protection. This absorption though is not true of UV-A and UV-B. More and more scientific evidence is showing that exposure to both UV-A and UV-B can have damaging long and short term effects on your eyes and vision. If you are exposed, unprotected, to excessive amounts of UV radiation over a short period of time, i.e. a tanning booth without protective eyewear, you are likely to experience an effect called photokeratitis. Like a “sunburn of the eye” it may be painful and you may have symptoms including red eyes, a foreign body sensation or gritty feeling in the eyes, extreme sensitivity to light and excessive tearing. Fortunately, this is usually temporary and rarely causes permanent damage to the eyes. Long term exposure to UV radiation can be much more serious. A number of scientific studies and research have shown that exposure to small amounts of UV-B radiation over a period of many years contributes to the development of cataract s; pterigia (tissue growth on the surface of the eye); skin cancer around the eye; and can cause damage to the retina (macular degeneration), the nerve-rich lining of your eye that is used for seeing. Damage to the retina is usually not reversible. While everyone is at risk of the harmful effects of UV-A and UV-B radiation, certain people are at an increased risk because the effects of UV radiation are cumulative. This means the longer your eyes are exposed to UV radiation, the greater the risk of developing conditions such as cataracts in later life. Therefore, you should wear quality sunglasses that offer good protection and a hat or cap with a wide brim whenever you are working outdoors, participating in outdoor sports, taking a walk, running errands or doing anything in the sun.
Sunglasses have been popular with people for years, both for comfort and as a fashion accessory. However as studies and research continue to demonstrate a relationship between UV-A/UV-B exposure and ocular disease, the protection of the long-term health of your eyes is yet another reason to wear sunglasses. In order for sunglasses to provide adequate protection for your eyes
“protect your eyes, always wear sunglasses when go outdoors”
remember, this is for your own protection.
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