Just like sun exposure to the skin can cause long-term harm, the eyes can also suffer permanent and long-term damage because of excessive UV exposure.
Salt Lake City, Utah (PRWEB) May 29, 2014
As the summer months approach and families will be spending more time outdoors in the coming weeks, Dr. Brian Davis of Davis Vision Center in South Jordan, UT is encouraging patients to be mindful of protecting their eyes in the summer sun. Sunburned eyes are one of the most common summer injuries, and the American Optometric Association estimates that about 35 percent of American’s are unaware of UV radiation risks.
“During the summertime, especially in Utah, we see that people are very conscious about wearing sunscreen and making sure their skin doesn’t burn, but they aren’t as often concerned about the safety of their eyes,” said Dr. Brian Davis. “Just like sun exposure to the skin can cause long-term harm, the eyes can also suffer permanent and long-term damage because of excessive UV exposure.”
While sunglasses are an important element for extended days at the beach or on the lake, Dr. Davis stresses that eye protection should be worn whenever possible if outside in direct sunlight, even if it’s just for a short period of time like driving in the car or running errands. When purchasing sunglasses, it’s important to make sure that they offer UVA and UVB protection.
“Sunglasses are far from just a fashion accessory, and they shouldn’t be an item that you look for just at the dollar store,” said Dr. Davis. “Sunglasses should be viewed as more of an investment in long-term eye health, and spending a few dollars extra on a sturdy, safe pair will go a long way in keeping vision intact.”
Dr. Davis also stresses that eye protection is vital for younger children, especially those of the ages when their eyes are still developing. For active children, many sunglass styles offer Velcro bands that will stay in place all day. Pairing sunglasses with a hat is also important for prolonged sun exposure, since sunglasses don’t always keep out 100% of the sun’s rays, especially when the angle of the sun shifts throughout the day.
In the case of sunburned eyes, lubricating eye drops should be used to ease the pain and irritation and sun exposure should be limited. If the pain gets worse from the burn, patients should see an eye doctor immediately.
Long-term effects of excessive sun exposure to the eyes can include possible macular degeneration, cataracts, skin cancer of the eyelids, or even benign growths on the eye.
“Unfortunately, too many people take their eyesight for granted and don’t put a high priority on protecting their eyes,” said Dr. Brian Davis. “But everyone only gets one set of eyes, so it’s important to protect what we have as best as possible before it becomes too late to do so.”
Dr. Davis is a renowned Utah LASIK surgeon and was one of the first ophthalmologists in Utah to offer LASIK surgery in 1996. He has personally performed more than 27,000 LASIK procedures, and also offers treatment for a variety of other eye conditions.
For more information about Dr. Davis or best practices for eye health, please visit http://www.davisvisionmd.com.