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Why You Regularly Need to Replace Your Sunglasses

Did you know that sunglasses, or at least sunglass lenses, regularly need to be replaced? 

According to a study conducted at the University of São Paulo, the UV protection that sunglasses provide deteriorates over time. You may adore your current ones, but if you’ve been rocking those shades for two or more years, it might be time to get a new pair. 

In addition to the UV-blocking properties, anti-reflective and anti-scratch coatings wear down, and the frame material may become brittle over the years, too. Even if you have the most durable sunglasses available, regular lens-replacement is the best way to ensure that your vision is maximally protected from the harmful effects of ultraviolet light. 

UV Light and Sunglasses

The protective efficacy of your sunglasses comes in large part from the lens coating of dyes and pigments that reflect and absorb ultraviolet radiation. They create a barrier that prevents UV radiation from penetrating your eyes.

However, this protective coating can, and often does, break down over time. Wear and tear can cause an invisible web of tiny abrasions, compromising its UV-blocking power. Furthermore, the protective dyes and pigments aren’t able to absorb UV rays indefinitely; the more sunlight they’re exposed to, the more rapidly they’ll become ineffective. 

A pair of shades worn on occasion and in mild conditions is likely to remain effective longer than a pair that is heavily used in a more intensely sunny environment. For example, if you spend long days on the water paddling, kayaking, or canoeing, the protective coating on your lenses will deteriorate more quickly than it would if you only wear your shades to go grocery shopping or sit in a cafe. 

Why It’s Important to Protect Your Eyes From UV

Protecting your eyes from the sun is critical no matter where in the world you are, as UV exposure places you at risk for developing eye diseases like eye cancer, pterygium, and pinguecula — which can result in disfigurement and discomfort — as well as cataracts and macular degeneration — which cause vision loss and, in severe cases, blindness.

Even short-term overexposure can result in photokeratitis, a corneal sunburn. Symptoms include eye pain, swelling, light sensitivity, and temporary vision loss. Some people experience it when spending too much time boating or skiing without wearing eye protection. Snow and water can increase solar exposure because they reflect sunlight toward your face.  

What to Look for When Getting New Sunglasses

When choosing new sunglasses, make sure they’re labeled 100% UV protection or UV400. Although most pairs sold in the United States and Canada offer this degree of protection, it’s still worth confirming before making the purchase. Keep in mind that factors like cost, polarization, lens color, or darkness don’t have much to do with the level of UV protection. Even clear prescription lenses can be UV protective. 

It’s important to note that there is a lot of counterfeit sunwear in the marketplace. This is dangerous since counterfeit eyewear may not provide much-needed ultraviolet protection. So if the price of a renowned brand is too good to be true, it’s probably a fake. 

The size and fit of the sunglasses is important. Bigger is definitely better if you spend a lot of time outdoors. Larger wrap-around eyewear is best if you regularly ski or spend many hours in the water, as this style blocks light from all directions. 

To find out whether it’s still safe to wear your favorite shades, visit a Copperas Cove eye doctor to determine whether your lenses still offer the right level of UV protection. It’s also a good opportunity to discuss prescription sunwear. 

For more information about UV safety, or to get the perfect sunglasses tailored to your vision needs and lifestyle, contact Cove Eyecare in Copperas Cove today!  

 

References 

https://biomedical-engineering-online.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s12938-016-0209-7

 

Summer Heat Wave and Your Eyes

This summer, heat waves with scorching temperatures have hit communities nationwide, making an already hot summer even hotter. With high temps and heat waves in certain areas, it’s now more important than ever to protect yourself.

For best practices and tips for maintaining healthy vision in the summer heat, talk to the Cove Eyecare.

How Can Heat Affect Vision?

Staying out in the sun too long can give you a sunburn and make you feel exhausted. Did you know that it can affect your vision, too?

If you get dehydrated, lack of moisture can make it hard for your eyes to naturally produce enough tears, which can contribute to seasonal dry eye. If you already have dry eye, extremely dry heat can exacerbate your symptoms of itchy, red, sore, and irritated eyes.

Do you sit in front of a fan or air conditioning system? That may feel great, but it can also contribute to dryer and less comfortable eyes.

To give your eyes some temporary relief, keep artificial tears on hand. If your eyes still feel dry or uncomfortable, contact Cove Eyecare.

If You Love the Sun, Read This

Golden sunshine may sound dreamy, but too much isn’t a good thing.

The sun’s ultraviolet (UV) rays can be very harmful, and your eyes are no exception. UV radiation, which can gradually contribute to eye conditions like cataracts and macular degeneration. Dr. Micheline Young recommends that you always wear sunglasses with 100% of UVA and UVB light blocking protection. There’s no shortage of trendy and sunglasses, designed with a flair for fashion, so you won’t have to compromise on style while protecting your eyes from dangerous UV rays.

Excessive sun exposure can cause headaches, blurry vision, eye pain, and eyestrain. So while you’re out at the pool, hanging out at the beach, sunbathing, or at a backyard barbeque, pay close attention to how much time you’re outside.

If you love the sunshine, you just need to protect yourself. Wear hats, sunscreen, and, of course, 100% UV protective polarized sunglasses. But if you experience discomfort or symptoms that don’t go away on their own, then it’s time to visit your eye doctor.

Computer Vision Syndrome in the Summer

There’s nothing quite like a family road trip or flying to a vacation getaway over the summer. Yet something about being stuck in the backseat of a car or inside of an airplane makes kids feel closed in and restless. It’s then that many kids will play on a smartphone, iPad, or gaming device over many hours to help pass the time.

When it comes to kids and computer use, they’re just as susceptible to the effects of digital eye strain, also called Computer Vision Syndrome, as adults are. In fact, studies show that 25% of children spend more than 3 hours each day on digital devices.

In the summer, when the heat is sizzling, it’s tempting for kids to spend more time than usual watching TV, using a computer, or playing games on their smartphones. To help ease the effects of digital eyestrain, Dr. Micheline Young suggests following the 20-20-20 rule: Every 20 minutes, take 20 seconds to look at something at least 20 feet away. It’s a great way to counteract the effects of Computer Vision Syndrome and let the eyes rest.

This summer, however you choose to beat the heat, don’t forget to protect your vision and keep your eyes strong and healthy. The Cove Eyecare is always here to help if you have any questions.

Have a great summer!

Stop squinting – Contact Lens Sunglasses Exist!

Sunglasses have always been your go-to for shading your eyes to stop squinting in the sun, but they’re not always the most convenient accessory. They fog up and slip down your nose when you work up a sweat, and need to be wiped off when you’re hit by water spray at the beach. But what’s the alternative? Is there another way to protect your eyes from UV rays and soothe your vision from the blinding Copperas Cove light?

Our Cove Eyecare eye doctors are pleased to offer a revolutionary solution – the new ACUVUE® OASYS with Transitions™ Light Intelligent Technology™ contact lenses. These contact lenses that can act like sunglasses were given FDA approval in April 2018. And they were also awarded to be one of TIME’s Best Inventions of 2018.

Now that we’ve caught your eye with this hot new tech, read on for more info about Acuvue’s contact lenses sunglasses from your favorite Copperas Cove, Texas optometrists’ office.

Smart & Dynamic Contact Lenses

ACUVUE® OASYS with Transitions™ Light Intelligent Technology™ are the first contacts to be developed that “read” the light conditions in your environment and adapt to enhance your vision. These lenses use photochromic technology that was designed in partnership with Transitions™, the leading manufacturer of photochromic eyeglasses lenses. The contacts incorporate a special additive that darkens automatically when exposed to light.

When exposed to outdoor UV and/or blue light from digital devices, these contacts react quickly. And because they respond “intelligently” to changing light conditions outdoors, the lenses do not typically remain in the darkest state the whole time you’re outside. So when you’re on an open stretch of beach, they’re not the same as when you’re standing under the shade of a wide awning. The effects on the appearance of your eyes is minimal, and when you come indoors, they fade back to clear within 60 seconds.

Sharper, Safer Vision – All Day Long

Surveys estimate that 94% of all consumers compensate for bright light conditions by squinting, dimming indoor lights, reducing screen brightness, or shading their eyes. ACUVUE® OASYS with Transitions™ Light Intelligent Technology™ filter indoor and outdoor light, including blue light rays that threaten your eye health. At night, these contact lenses sunglasses are also useful, as they reduce haloes and starburst. Your vision will improve during all hours of the day.

See the Benefits of Contact Lenses Sunglasses

  • Experience the comfort and convenience of going frame-free – while still safeguarding your vision
  • Highest level of UV protection in a contact lens
  • When you go into a darker environment, these contacts help your vision recover from bright light up to 5 seconds faster than normal
  • Ultimate gain, with only a minimal change to the appearance of your eyes and face
  • Crisp nighttime vision, with no disturbing haloes or starbursts
  • Soothing vision all day long, without bothersome glare

Visit our Copperas Cove, Texas, eye doctor to try ACUVUE® OASYS with Transitions™

We’re thrilled to offer these breakthrough contacts at Cove Eyecare! Our eye doctors would like to point out that while these contact lenses sunglasses are truly remarkable, we don’t recommend that you use them to replace your sunglasses all of the time.

While they offer exceptional UV protection to the areas they cover, contact lenses still leave other parts of your eyes and the surrounding ocular tissue naked to UV light. Sunglasses cover a wider area and therefore give additional protection. In addition, car windshields block close to 100% of UV light, so your ACUVUE® OASYS with Transitions™ won’t darken when you’re behind the wheel. To solve that problem, they can easily be worn under non-prescription sunglasses. So when you visit Cove Eyecare for your contact lenses fitting, check out our nonprescription sunglasses collection too!


At Cove Eyecare, we put your family’s needs first. Talk to us about how we can help you maintain healthy vision. Call us today: 254-549-1142 or book an appointment online to see one of our Copperas Cove eye doctors.

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