Q&A: Sun Safety and Your Eyes

July 3rd, 2019

Common questions about sun safety and protecting your eyes.

We gathered common questions that aren’t often answered about sun safety and your eyes. If you have a question you would like answered, leave it in the comments below and we will do our best to find you an answer.

Q: When do UV rays affect the eyes?

A: UV radiation is present year-round, so despite the season or weather. It’s important to wear proper eye and skin protection while outside during daylight hours.1

Q: Do all sunglasses offer UVA/UVB protection?

A: No. Since shielding the eyes from damaging radiation is crucial, it is imperative to look for a label, sticker or tag indicating UV protection before purchasing a pair of sunglasses.1

Q: Does the darkness of the lenses equate to higher UV protection?

A: No. However, 39.4 percent of American adults believe it does. Dark lenses without adequate UV protection can be worse than wearing no sunglasses at all because they cause the eye’s pupil to dilate, which then increases retinal exposure to unfiltered UV.1

Q: I can’t get skin cancer, especially around the eyes, because my normal routine (such as driving to work, hobbies, and vacations) doesn’t include a lot of time outdoors.

A:  False. Dermatologists (skin doctors) say brief sun exposures all year round can add up to major damage for people with fair skin. And some of the sun’s ultraviolet rays can even pass through windows, so driving or even sitting by a window during peak sun hours, 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., can expose your skin to damaging UV rays if the sun is shining directly on you.2

Q: If I have darker skin, do I still need to worry about protecting the skin around my eyes?

A: Yes. Everyone needs to use sun protection.

For a more in-depth look into sun safety and your eyes visit our article on defending your eyes against UV rays.

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  1. https://thevisioncouncil.org/content/uv-eye-protection
  2. https://www.cancer.org/healthy/be-safe-in-sun/sun-safety.html
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