July is UV Safety Month

July is UV Safety Month

Jul 29, 2020

The UV rays can be very harmful to our eyes and should be protected from sun exposure. They can impact our vision and affect our lives. The sun exposure to the eyes can cause a lot of eye problems like macular degeneration, cataracts, corneal sunburn, or skin cancer around the eyelids.

People with cataract or other eye disorders can contact the experteye doctor in Glendale, CAat Glendale Eye Medical Groupto get the right treatment for their eyes.

Are Kids At High Risk of Eye Damage?

Yes. The children playing in the sun and getting exposed to extended hours are at risk of eye damage from the UV radiation. Children have transparent lenses in their eyes and sensitive skin due to which they are under high risk of sun damage.

Why UV Rays Are Harmful for Eyes?Short Term and Long Term Effects

The UV-A rays can damage the central vision and UV-B rays can damage the cornea and the front of the eye. The UV-A and UV-B rays can have short term or long term effects on the vision.

When the light falls on the cornea and lens, it absorbs the UV-B light and the UV-A light that passes from the back part of the eye. This reaches the macula and damages the central vision of the eyes.

As you know UV lights are harmful to the eyes, so there should be limited exposure to the sunlight to protect the eyes in the long run. While going out, you should always protect your eyes to reduce the risk of damage.

Our eyes are the most sensitive part of our body that helps us to see the beautiful world. So, they should be protected from all types of ultraviolet radiation.

Short Term Eye Problem

Getting exposed to the sun for long hours can cause uncomfortable and painful eyes for a short period of time. The most common short term eye problems that can occur are:

1. Photo Keratitis

Photo Keratitisis a temporary inflammation of the cornea. It causes pain in the eyes when the eyes are exposed to intense UV-B rays in a short time. It is common in high altitude areas like snow or water, where the strong ground reflection of the sun can cause eye problems.

The photokeratitis can show it’s symptoms within 24 hours of sun exposure and cause red eyes, extreme light sensitivity, and sometimes it can also cause temporary vision loss.

2. Photo Conjunctivitis

The symptoms of photo conjunctivitis are temporary and will go away in some time. It is the inflammation of the conjunctiva that caused significant discomfort but don’t impact the eye vision.

It is always better to protect your eyes before extreme sun exposure to prevent short term or long term impacts of sun exposure.

Long Term Effects of Sun Exposure

The unprotected sun exposure can impact the children, teens, and young adults, and its effects are shown later in life. It can cause long term eye conditions such as pterygium, pinguecula, and climate droplet keratopathy.

A lifetime of unprotected exposure to UV rays causes more long term eye problems such as cataracts, macular degeneration, and skin cancer.

1. Macular Degeneration

It occurs when a part of the retina is damaged due to which the central vision is lost and the person finds it difficult to concentrate on fine details. The risk of developing MD increases with unprotected sun exposure.

2. Cataracts

A cataract is the cloudiness of the eye’s lens due to exposure to UV-B rays.

3. Skin Cancer

It occurs due to long exposure to UV rays. The prolonged sun exposure can cause skin cancer in and around the eyelids. It can even lead to melanoma that needs surgical removal of the eyeball.

Ways to Protect your Eyes from Sun Exposure

Below are the different ways by which you can guard your eyes against sun exposure:

  • Always wear protective sunglasses to prevent sun exposure to your eyes.
  • Consult an optometrist near you, who will recommend UV protective sunglasses for your eyes and provide you treatment for your eyes.
  • Wear your sunglasses even when you wear contact lenses. It will protect the tissues and skin around the eyes or when you are in shade as the UV rays get reflected from the buildings, roadways, and other surfaces.
  • For extra protection, you should wear a hat on sunny days. Also, use a sunblock to protect yourself from the harmful UV rays.
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