In America alone, nearly 75% of adults need some kind of vision correction. This can be in the form of contact lenses, or, as in your case, a prescription for glasses. You wear glasses every day to see clearly and accomplish tasks at work, school, and other tasks.
You've considered buying prescription sunglasses in the past, but consider the purchase to be a novelty and not worth the expense. After all, you have traditional glasses that you wear indoors and outside; why invest in yet another pair of glasses?
Here are reasons to consider investing in prescription sunglasses. The benefits of prescription eyewear for outdoor use are worth the initial cost.
The Sun Damages Your Eyes
The same UV rays that penetrate your skin and cause potentially dangerous and painful sunburns also damage your eyes. The sun causes ample damage to your eyes that your traditional glasses do not protect your eyes against. Some of the damages the sun can cause your eyes are explained in further detail here.
There have been links to sun damage and various eye conditions, including glaucoma, macular degeneration, cataracts, and photokeratitis. These conditions are very serious, and some require surgery or prescription medications to treat. Investing in prescription sunglasses helps block the UV rays that damage your eyes over time.
Your eyes can and will get sunburned from prolonged sun exposure. Sunburn is very painful in the eyes and causes redness, a dry and irritated sensation, light sensitivity, and swelling around the eyes. Sunburn in the eyes is often caused by reflected sunlight from the water or snow.
A sunburn in the eye can leave a permanent white scar on the eye, similar to the darkening of your skin from a sunburn on other areas of your body. Speak to your optometrist if you have recently experienced a sunburn in your eyes to see if any lasting damage has been done (and to seek treatment, if necessary).
Direct sunlight exposure to your eyes for prolonged periods of time can cause temporary or semi-permanent blindness. Snow blindness is an example of this type of frightening eye condition that should be treated immediately by an optometrist.
To protect your eyes against the sun's damaging rays, invest in prescription sunglasses that block both UVB and UVA rays. Sunglasses are rated per the amount of sun protection they provide; aim for as close to 100% protection as you can afford when buying prescription sunglasses.
Alternatives Are Unsatisfactory
There are clip-on sunglasses that slip over your current glasses for temporary protection against the sun, as well as flexible shades that you can place over your glasses. These temporary eye protectors can be uncomfortable and don't custom-fit to your face or the shape of your glasses.
Investing in tinted lenses that transition from indoor to outdoor use can also be helpful, but may not allow for the best sun protection for your eyes. Compare alternatives to prescription sunglasses with your optometrist, so you know which option is best for your eye health needs.
Your optometrist will schedule you for an eye exam if your current glasses prescription has expired prior to fitting you for prescription sunglasses. Choose eyewear that is lightweight and comfortable and always keep your sunglasses in your vehicle, purse, or stored in a convenient location, so you have them available when you go outside.
Part of protecting your vision is using all the modern resources available for proper eye health. Wearing prescription sunglasses is another way you can protect your eyes. Speak to our friendly staff at the office of Harry W. Chan, OD today. We will fit you with the right pair of prescription sunglasses for your needs.