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Sunglasses have become a common item frequently associated with fashion, but they are much more than a fashion statement. Sunglasses are a necessary item because they protect people from the harmful effects of UV rays on the eyes. UV is the acronym used for ultraviolet, and it refers to the type of radiation that is emitted from the sun.
The sun is necessary for all life on earth, but like anything, too much of it makes people susceptible to health problems. Physicians have made great strides in getting people to protect their skin by wearing sun block lotion when exposed to the sun for any significant amount of time. The UV rays can cause cancer and aggravate many different types of skin conditions. On the other hand, although people are very aware of the dangers of radiation on the skin, they often venture out without adequately protecting their eyes.
UV radiation from the sun has specific effects on the eyes. The eyes are susceptible to sun damage in different ways. The delicate tissues and cells within the eyes absorb UV light. With enough absorption through exposure, the eyes can suffer corneal damage. The lens and the retina can also be affected. Other risks include developing conditions like cataracts and photokeratitis (also known as ultraviolet keratitis), a painful condition where the eyes suffer burns from prolonged sun exposure.
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One common misconception is that sunglasses are only necessary on sunny days. The truth is that UV rays pass through clouds, so wearing protective sunglasses is recommended even in overcast days. Fortunately, protecting our eyes is as simple as remembering to wear proper sunglasses when outdoors.
Care must be taken when choosing eye wear to ensure the selection of styles that provide sufficient coverage. This should be evaluated in terms of total blocking ability (measured in percentage), as well as total surface coverage, given that UV rays can enter from above or from the sides of the eyes. With the many choices in fashionable styles and designer eye wear available, protecting eyes from the harmful side effects of the sun is as fun as it is necessary. Make sure your glasses say they offer 100% UVA and UVB protection. This is usually marked by a small sticker on the lens. If you have any questions regarding the UV protection a certain pair of sunglasses offers be sure to ask the sales person you are dealing with.
This article was written by Dicks Cottons, a leading lifestyle sunglasses and accessories brand. Founded in 2009, DicksCottons.com offers a wide selection of lifestyle sunglasses and clothes to meet your needs. All Dicks Cottons sunglasses offer 100% UVA and UVB protection.