One of the best things about summertime is going on vacation! Who doesn’t love to sit on the beach and relax under the warm rays of the sun? But, while most people are so distracted by fun in the sun, they often forget about the damage the sun can do to their eyes.
We all know that the sun is bad for our skin, and that skin cancer is on the rise, but did you know that your eyes need to be protected just as well as your skin does? If not, then don’t worry. Read on to find out just how your eyes can stay protected and healthy during the hot summer months.
Getting the Most Out of Your Sunglasses
The best thing that you can do for your eyes during the summer is to wear sunglasses! The type or kind doesn’t really matter as long as they offer good UV protection. And, it is important to note that sunglasses that are polarized offer a lot better protection that the cheap sunglasses that you bought at a novelty store. Even so, the cheap glasses will still offer enough protection if you are only going to be in the sun for a few hours.
If you are going to a summer festival though, or plan on lying next to the ocean for the entire day, then you might want to invest in one expensive pair of glasses. The ideal sunglasses will protect against both UVA and UVB rays, and they will say so directly on the tag when you are looking in the store. If you don’t invest in a new pair, then you could suffer through a very painful consequence — burned corneas.
A burned cornea is just as painful as it sounds, and it can be extremely damaging to your vision. People who experience burned corneas won’t often even know what’s happening while they are outside playing in the sun. Instead, they will begin to feel excruciating pain hours after the sun has gone down, and will often make impromptu trips to the ER for any kind of relief.
Other Summertime Eye Risks
Another thing to think about during the summer is the possible chemicals and foreign objects your eyes might come in contact with. Have you ever noticed that when you jump in the pool your eyes sting? This is because the chemicals are imbalanced in the water. Now, this won’t cause any damage to your vision unless the chemicals are severely imbalanced (which is rare), but the rule of thumb is, if your eyes hurt, then get out of the pool. Wash your eyes out immediately with cool, fresh water and wear goggles if you decide to venture in the pool again.
Contact lens wearers should take extra precaution when they swim during the summer. Whether they are in a pool, a lake or an ocean, contact lens wearers should not wear their lenses in the water. The chemicals in a pool can irritate your contacts, plus you could also lose your contacts in the pool. Once you go underwater, the forces that are causing your contacts to stick to your eyes are lost, and your contacts could simply pop out!
If you are in a lake or ocean, then you need to be aware of possible infections. Lake and ocean water can get trapped underneath your lenses, and your eyes could become irritated or infected within a few hours of leaving the water.
Foreign objects can also impede your vision, and put you on the sidelines during your summer of fun. Ocean water, dust, grass and even small insects can all get into your eyes and cause your eyes to itch, and be generally bothersome. Plus, if you scratch your eyes and there are foreign objects inside of them, then you could give yourself a corneal abrasion, which is definitely no fun.
The best way to protect your eyes during those fun summer months is to simply be aware! Wear sunglasses or eye protection at all times, and be cognizant of your surroundings. If you are playing sports, then protect your eyes appropriately, and if you are swimming then bring goggles, and take out your contacts. Thankfully, most eye issues that occur during the summer are easily treatable and will go away with time.
However, no one likes sitting at home waiting for their eyes to heal while their friends are out and about having fun! Think before you leave the house, and always bring eye protection for the little ones in your family. Even infants should have a pair of sunglasses, they are just as important as sunscreen, and should always be worn by growing babies when they are in the sun.
If you want to take your eye protection to the next level, then consider taking multivitamins for your eyes. Rebuild Your Vision offers a great list of the 17 essential vitamins, minerals and herbal supplements that are medically proven to keep your eyes healthy and strong. Just as taking a multivitamin for your overall health is important, so is taking a multivitamin for your eyes.