Truth or Myth? 6 Tips About Sunglasses Protection

Posted by: Missouri Eye Institute in Blog on May 9, 2022

Most sunseekers have gotten the message about protecting their skin from the ravages of the sun. What isn’t always at the top of mind is the need to protect your eyes from ultraviolet rays as well.

The right sunglasses can block 99 to 100 percent of UVA and UVB radiation from the sun. This is important, because it can reduce the risk of a variety of eye diseases, including cataracts, age-related macular degeneration, eye cancer and more. But eye protection is still somewhat misunderstood.

Here, we tackle some of the most common beliefs about sunglasses. See how many you can correctly identify as true or false.

#1 – True or False? Sunglasses aren’t necessary on overcast days.

Although we associate sunglass wear with the blazing summer, there really is no “season” for good eye protection. Even on cloudy days, dangerous UV rays get through and do cumulative damage. There’s also the risk of snow blindness, or photokeratitis, a temporary blindness caused by the intense glare of the sun on snow or water. Make it a habit to have those trendy shades on hand year round and wear them as often as possible outdoors.

#2: True or False? Polarized lenses offer better protection.

Polarized lenses are not known to block more ultraviolet light, but they do have distinct advantages. The special coating does tame some of the glare from reflective surfaces, making driving, boating and skiing more comfortable.

#3: True or False? The darker the sunglasses, the better they protect you.

Super-dark lenses don’t necessarily indicate great UV protection. While they may dim light effectively, they must also be designed specifically to block UV radiation. Shop for sunglasses that clearly state they are “100% UV-blocking” to ensure you’re getting full protection.

#4: True or False? You don’t have to spend a lot to get good sun protection.

Even a $5 pair of sunglasses can block 100 percent of the sun’s harmful radiation. The trick is to choose glasses that state on the label that they provide 100 percent protection from UVA/UVB radiation or UV 400 protection.

#5: True or False? The bigger, the better.

Oversized or wraparound sunglasses help block more UV light from entering the eye from around the lenses. They are also more effective at blocking wind and debris that could irritate eyes.

#6: True or False? Tinted sunglasses offer better protection.

It’s true that green, gray, amber or blue sunglass lenses look cool. They can even help enhance color contrast, making it easier for the wearer to see details in their environment. Unfortunately, fashionable doesn’t mean effective when it comes to UV-blocking power. Again, always choose glasses that are labeled as full UV-blocking lenses to get the best protection against sun damage.

Want even more professional advice on eye protection? Make an appointment with your eye doctor! They can work with you to identify the best sunglasses for the area you live in, your hobbies and your individual eyesight.

Missouri Eye Institute has helped thousands of patients attain freedom from glasses and contact lenses. Contact us at (800) 383-3831 or click here to schedule a thorough eye exam or visit to learn more about our services.

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