What Our Elko Eye Doctor Wants You To Know About Sunglasses

Get the right sunglasses for you from our Elko optometrist

Most people understand the effect too much sun has on the skin, but what about your eyes? The combination of UV rays and glare from the sun will take their toll without proper eye protection, but not all sunglasses are made the same. It takes an eye doctor to provide sun protection that saves your eyes from irreversible damage. Learn more about the dangers your eyes face in the sun and why the right sunglasses matter.

How UV Rays Affect the Eyes

UV stands for ultraviolet light, a band that is invisible to the naked eye. UV rays come in various formats but only two kinds reach the earth – UVA and UVB. Both types can potentially damage the sensitive elements of the eye.

The most common damage is a condition known as cataracts. When our optometrist in Elko sees cataracts it means the lenses that help focus light are cloudy. The film over the lenses comes from a protein buildup directly related to UV ray exposure. When a person has cataracts, they have trouble seeing at night; struggle to see colors and it becomes difficult to read.

Excessive UV exposure can damage the complex tissue that makes up the retina at the back of the eye. This is the part of the eye that helps translate light into something the brain can interpret. You may also suffer “sunburn” on the cornea – the transparent coating over the eye globe without effective sunglasses.

How Sunglasses Protect the Eyes

Ordinary sunglasses may not offer your eyes proper protection from UV rays. They will help reduce glare from the bright Elko sun only. The optometrist can help you find sunglasses that block out 99 percent of the UV rays – both UVA and UVB. When shopping, look for a label that says “UV 400.” This rating system means the lenses will block rays as small as 400 nanometers, so you have 100 percent eye protection.

Ask Your Elko Optometrist to Recommend Proper Sunglasses

There are a number of options that go beyond the standard sunglass design. The hot Nevada sun may require you to get polarized lenses when purchasing sunglasses in Elko. These lenses filter out specific types of glare that tend to radiate off of horizontal surfaces in strong sunlight. The Elko optometrist might recommend this special filter if glare in a problem for you.

Prescription sunglasses mean you will see your best while outdoors, as well. You can even get UV-protecting contacts and continue to wear your favorite non-prescription sunglasses safely. You’ll have style and UV protection at the same time.

The right sunglasses combined with a little common sense, like wearing a broad-brimmed hat when going to the beach, will keep your eyes safe from dangerous UV rays. If you are shopping for new sunglasses, get professional help to ensure you pick the right ones. Give us a call at (775) 738-8491 for a complete eye exam and sunglass recommendations.