spacer
spacer About Your Lenses   Home Eyewear Treatments Eye Health Find Your Doctor spacer
 
spacer
spacer

 

Vision Correction
divide
Vision Conditions
divide
UV Damage
divide
Lens Care
divide
Vision Care Professionals

 


UV Damage

divide

Vision Correction

The vast majority of Americans understand the link between exposure to sunlight, with its ultraviolet wavelengths, and skin cancer. Although there is considerable public awareness about the ability of UV rays to burn and age the skin, most consumers do not fully appreciate the damage that sunlight can inflict on their eyes. In fact, a 2009 survey by the American Optometric Association (AOA) found that one in three adults are unaware of the eye health risks of overexposure to sunlight without appropriate eye protection.

UV radiation is subdivided into three bands: UVA (400 to 320 nm), UVB (320 to 290 nm), and UVC (290 to 100 nm) based on their biologic effects. UVA is responsible for the tanning or browning of the skin, and UVB causes sunburn and tissue damage. UVC is germicidal in nature and not commonly encountered on the earth's surface. In the short term, excessive exposure to UV radiation from daily activities can burn the front surface of the eye, similar to sunburn on the skin. In the long term, UV rays can cause damage to surface tissues and internal structures of the eye. The effects of UV on the eye are cumulative, and prolonged exposure can lead to a variety of eye disorders, such as cataracts, macular degeneration, melanoma and ptergyum.

Prolonged sun exposure is particularly hazardous for children, as studies indicate that children are exposed to three times as much as sun as adults and most of the exposure to sun happens during childhood. According to a 2009 survey by the AOA, just 29% of parents say they make sure their children wear sunglasses while outdoors, indicating a general lack of awareness of the severity of UV damage.
Sun lenses can be extremely effective in providing protection from this harmful UV radiation. While the FDA regulates sunglasses as medical devices, no minimum level of UV protection is stipulated by the agency; therefore, sunglasses found in a retail environment can range from fully protective to completely ineffective. Quality prescription polarized lenses offer 99-100% protection against harmful UVA and UVB rays.

 

spacer
Essilor / Vision Source spacer
Vision Source Essilor USA