“The Future’s so Bright, I Gotta Wear Shades”

The sun is tentatively peeping out from behind the snow clouds, at last. Apart from replenishing our vitamin D deficiency, the sun means cool looking shades. Be they Jackie O over-sized or John Lennon teashades, your street cred is boosted a notch as soon as you don your sunglasses.

Hipness aside, wearing sunglasses is, of course, good common sense and, according to the American Optometric Association, here’s why:

Reasons to Wear Sunglasses

1.) UV Protection. The sun’s UV radiation can cause cataracts; benign growths on the eye’s surface; and photokeratitis, sometimes called snow blindness, which is a temporary but painful sunburn of the eye’s surface. Wide-brimmed hats and caps can block about 50 percent of UV radiation from the eyes but optometrists say that is not enough protection.

2.) Blue-Light Protection. Long-term exposure to the blue and violet portion of the solar spectrum has been implicated as a risk factor for macular degenration especially for individuals that are “sun sensitive.”

3.) Comfortable vision. The sun’s brightness and glare interferes with comfortable vision and the ability to see clearly by causing people to squint and the eyes to water.

4.) Dark adaptation. Spending just two or three hours in bright sunlight can hamper the eyes’ ability to adapt quickly to night time or indoor light levels. This can make driving at night after spending a day in the sun more hazardous.

5.) Skin Cancer. Cancer of the eyelids and skin around the eyes is more common than people think. People should wear sunglasses outdoors whether they are working, driving, participating in sports, taking a walk, running errands or doing anything in the sun.

Five Tips for Healthy Eyes

1.) Wear protective eyewear any time your eyes are exposed to UV light, even on cloudy days and during winter months.

2.) Look for quality sunglasses that offer good protection. Sunglasses should block out 99 to 100 percent of both UVA and UVB radiation and screen out 75 to 90 percent of visible light.

3.) Check to make sure your sunglass lenses are perfectly matched in color and free of distortions and imperfections.

4.) Purchase gray-colored lenses. They reduce light intensity without altering the color of objects, providing the most natural color vision.

5.) Don’t forget protection for children and teenagers. They typically spend more time in the sun than adults.

Source: American Optometric Association

For certain sports such as golf, polarization has the potential to cause a loss of visual information that may reduce performance. …

Here is a selection of sunglasses specifically designed with golfers in mind.

Bollé Swiftkick


Rudy Project Syluro

Nike Siege

And who are those two famous faces behind those sunglasses!

Sergio Garcia in Bollé sunglasses

Tiger Woods wearing Nike Siege sunglassses

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Anita Renaud March 3, 2010

Never leave without your shades..especially south of the Equator, where the sun shines so brightly and where they say the ozone layer is thinning the most….


beachcomber March 4, 2010

Hi Anita! You are so right! Thanks for your comment – keep those cards and letters coming…. I’ll ask Sookie about sun protection creams as well.


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