Protect Your Vision With Prescription Sunglasses

Colorado gets a lot of sun compared with some states, so if you spend a lot of time outdoors, a great pair of prescription sunglasses is essential. Whether you’re driving to work, out running errands, or on the trails in the mountains, sunglasses can help prevent a variety of eye conditions. For affordable products and supportive staff, visit Spectrum Eye Care in Colorado Springs today.

Here are some frequently asked questions about the role of sunglasses in protecting the eyes from harm. If you want to know more about choosing the right sunglasses, call Dr. Bennett at 719 593-2333 today.

What are UV rays?

UV stands for ultraviolet, and it’s a band of spectrum that is invisible to the eye. Ultraviolet light consists of UVA, UVB and UVC rays. UVC rays are stopped in the Earth’s atmosphere before they reach the eye, but UVA and UVB can both reach the eye and potentially damage it.

How does UV affect unprotected eyes?

UV rays can cause proteins inside the lens to become opaque or cloudy, a condition known as cataracts. Cataracts can interfere with night vision, reduce your ability to see colors and make reading difficult; they cannot be reversed, only removed. UV exposure can also cause retinal damage, changes in the eye tissues, and a temporary but irritating “sunburn” of the cornea, called photokeratitis.

How do I know my glasses will protect my eyes?

Choose glasses that claim to block at least 99 percent of UV rays — UVA as well as UVB. Look for labels reading, “UV 400,” since this designation means that the glasses block UV rays as small as 400 nanometers, providing 100-percent eye protection. Of course, you need to protect your eyes from the glare caused by the visible spectrum as well. To accomplish this, select products that block 75 to 90 percent of visible light.

What are polarized lenses?

Polarized lenses are specially designed to filter out certain types of glare that tend to radiate upward from horizontal surfaces when sunlight bounces off of these surfaces. They are recommended for active outdoor tasks, such as boating, fishing, skiing, golfing, jogging, and driving. Most polarized lenses will bear a label identifying them as such.

What types of glasses can I choose from?

We are able to provide you with a wide range of sunglass options. If you normally wear glasses to correct your eyesight, you may be happy with a non-prescription pair of clip-ons or wraparound glasses that simply fit over your lenses. If you’d rather not wear that much equipment on your head all at once, you can order a pair of prescription sunglasses, or you can order glasses that darken when exposed to bright light.

What additional types of protection should I consider?

If you worry about light, including harmful UV, leaking in through the sides or top of your sunglasses, wear a broad-brimmed hat to reduce some of this exposure. If you use prescription eyewear to correct your eyesight, you may also want to think about getting a pair of UV-blocking contact lenses in your prescription. These lenses may be worn alongside a non-prescription pair of sunglasses for optimum eye protection.

Our optometrist serves clients throughout the region, including residents of Monument, Colorado Springs, Gleneagle, Flying Horse, and other great CO communities. For more information on choosing the right prescription sunglasses, contact our office today.