You are exposed to the sun whether you’re driving, playing sports or just enjoying a day outdoors. This means your eyes will also be exposed to direct sunlight and sun glare, as well as damaging solar rays.
In helping you maintain excellent vision this summer, Mellins i-Style has the following things you need to know about your eyes:
- Cataracts – The most common form of treatable blindness worldwide, cataracts are the cause of clouding that makes it difficult for the eye to see.
- Eyelid cancers – The U.S. Skin Cancer Foundation recently reported that eyelid cancers make up 5 to 10% of all skin cancers. The cancer usually occurs in the lower part of the eyelid, which is most exposed to the sun. It carries the risk of spreading to the eye itself and even affecting surrounding muscles, which can later deform parts of the face.
- Intraocular melanoma – This is the most common form of eye cancer that can either result in no symptoms or cause dark specs on the iris, hazy vision, or a change in the shape of the pupil.
- Macular degeneration – Also known as age-related macular degeneration (AMD), this condition is one of the leading causes of vision loss. It is the result of long-term damage to a small spot near the centre of the retina, the part of the eye needed for central vision. AMD is one of the results of the sun’s high-energy visible (HEV) radiation, also known as blue light. Unlike UV radiation, HEV rays are visible and people with low levels ofvitamin C and other antioxidants are more likely to suffer from retinal damage and AMD from HEV radiation.
- Harmful growths on the surface of the eye – Pterygium or benign growths on the conjunctiva (the protective membrane that spans across the outside of the eye), usually occur at a later stage in life. These growths can negatively affect sight and may need to be removed surgically.
- Keratitis (sunburn of the cornea) – This is the result of over exposure to UV rays, either from the sun or tanning equipment. In this case, it is recommended that polarised lenses and protective eyewear are worn when sun bathing and even during a tanning session at the salon.
- Photokeratitis – Exposure to high, short-term dosages of UV rays can cause a painful inflammation of the cornea. Photokeratitis, also known as ‘snow blindness’, can cause instant vision loss for up to 24 to 48 hours.
To best protect your eyes from the sun when outdoors, make sure that you are equipped with good-quality polarised sunglasses that can block 100% UV rays and absorb most HEV rays. It is also a good idea to keep your sunglasses on in the shade to ensure complete protection.
Source: Mellins i-Style