June Is UV Safety Month: Protect Your Eyes From the Sun

June is here and that means summer is upon us! June also means that it’s UV Safety Month – a great time to spread the message of sun, fun and the effects of UV rays. Ultraviolet (UV) radiation is the main cause of skin cancer, but can also damage your eyes if you leave them unprotected. It is always important to protect your eyes from harmful UV rays, but it is especially important during the extended daylight hours of the summer.

Here are some helpful tips to protect your eyes from the sun.
  • Choose sunglasses that block 100 percent of UVA and UVB rays. 
  • Select wraparound styles of sunglasses so that the sun’s rays cannot enter from the side of the frame. 
  • In addition to your sunglasses, wear a hat. Broad-brimmed hats proved the protection for your eyes. 
  • Don’t be fooled by cloudy skies! The sun’s rays can pass through haze and thin clouds. Sun damage to eyes can occur anytime of the year, not just summertime, so be certain to wear your sunglasses whenever you’re outside. 
  • Don’t rely on your contact lenses to provide protection. Even if your lenses have UV protection, you should always remember to wear your sunglasses as well. 
  • It sounds quite obvious, but never, ever look directly at the sun. Looking directly at the sun at any time, even during an eclipse, can lead to solar retionpathy, which is damage to the eye’s retina from solar radiation. 
  • It’s best to try and avoid exposure during peak sun times, which happen between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. This is when the sun’s UV rays are the strongest. but if you have to be outside, then it is especially important to shield your eyes with a hat and proper sunglasses.  

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Kerry Solomon, MD

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