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Sunglasses Aren’t Just For Style, They’re Also For Your Health—Here Are 10 Reasons Why

If you think wearing those sunnies are only to complete your OOTD, think again. These nifty accessories actually help you stay healthy

Celebrities wear them to shield themselves from the prying eyes of the public or the flash of a paparazzi’s camera. Some wear them to look mysterious, while others put them on to seem intimidating. For some, it’s to hide puffy eyes that have been crying or after a late night—or maybe even a black eye. For most of us, we sunglasses to look good and to complete our overall outfit.

But did you know that sunglasses can help you stay healthy? 

We list down several reasons why putting on those shades can improve your health and keep your eyesight in tiptop shape.

Protection from dust and pollution.

Exposure to dust and pollutants can irritate your eye. More often than not, we end up scratching our eye, developing into an infection like conjunctivitis (or pinkeye) or a sty. Eyewear also shields our eyes from pollen, sand and smoke which are eye irritants that can cause redness, itchiness, tearing of the eyes, and a burning sensation. Wearing shades prevents these particles from getting into our eye, thus keeping our (dirty) hands off our eyes and preventing irritation.

What you can wear:

Safeguards your eyes from sun’s UV rays and from eye sunburn. 

Indeed, the main purpose of wearing sunglasses is to protect our eyes from the sun’s harmful UV rays. UV rays are not only harmful to our skin, but also to our eyes. People who like to spend time outdoors are especially prone to sun exposure, but beachgoers and skiers, in particular are more prone to damaging their eyes. Snow tends to reflect off more UV rays, so those traveling to snowy destinations or going skiing must take extra caution, as too much sun exposure on the eye may lead to photokeratitis. This painful condition (also known as “welder’s eye”) that affects the cornea and the eyeball; this can lead to temporary blindness.

What you can wear:

Curbs vision loss.

Many eye diseases’ symptoms affect clarity of vision, mostly caused by too much sun exposure. Religiously wearing sunglasses limits your exposure to the sun’s UV rays, thus, preventing premature vision loss.

What you can wear:

Slows down macular degeneration and  cataracts.

Studies have shown that wearing sunglasses to shield our eyes from the sun’s glaring rays can help in preventing serious eye diseases such as macular degeneration and cataracts. One’s age, family history, eye and skin color, and lifestyle (diet, weight, sun exposure, and smoking habit) contribute to macular degeneration, or damage to the retina. Its symptoms include blurred vision, sensitivity to light, vision loss, and visual distortion. Cataracts, a formation of a cloudy area within the lens of the eye, typically has the same symptoms as macular degeneration, but can also result in poor night vision, changes in color vision , or sometimes, even double vision in one eye. While cataracts occur naturally with age, we can slow down its symptoms and effects by wearing sunglasses as it lessens direct sun exposure for our eyes.

What you can wear:

Reduce risks for glaucoma.

A hereditary disease, glaucoma is when fluid builds up in the eye which damages the optic nerve. This results in severe vision loss and blindness when left untreated. Long-term and prolonged exposure to the sun can be prevented by wearing sun protective eyewear. 

What you can wear:

Minimize chances of developing “surfer’s eye.”

Surfer’s eye or pterygium is a fleshy growth on the eye that can cause vision problems. While this condition isn’t serious, it can be annoying at most as your eyes turn red, feel itchy, and can feel gritty, like there’s something inside your eye. Most people at risk are those who are exposed to extreme and prolonged sunlight, but even cloudy days can be damaging as well.

What you can wear:

Keeps headaches and migraines at bay.

Do you regularly suffer from migraines? If you do, then you should make sure to wear shades all the time, as statistics show that about 80 percent of people suffering from migraines have photophobia or sensitivity to light. Along with this published study from the American Headache Society, researchers from the University of Utah are conducting further studies on photophobia, which is believed to be a migraine trigger. A pair of dark glasses, then, can be a source of comfort for migraine sufferer.

What you can wear:

Lowers risk for skin cancer.

Skin cancer doesn’t stop at putting on sunblock on your face and body. Your eyes and the skin surrounding it don’t get sun protection from these UV-protecting creams and lotions, thus wearing shades would greatly help in decreasing cancer risks. Studies have shown that 10 percent of skin cancers develop on the eyelid, making it even more imperative that you protect your eyes, too.

What you can wear:

Promotes safer driving.

While saying the wearing sunnies improves your driving can be quite a stretch, it is true that wearing dark eyewear helps you drive more safely. The dark glasses prevent the glaring sun’s rays from hitting your eyes, thus allowing you to see the road better. Your eyes also adjust better in the dark when you protect them from extreme brightness. 

What you can wear:

Keeps you looking young and youthful.

If none of these health benefits convince you to wear sunglasses regularly, then this last bit might. Putting on your favorite dark eyewear keeps you from squinting in the bright sunshine, thus, keeping those wrinkles and crow’s feet at bay. Remember that the skin around your eyes are thinner that other parts of your face, making it more susceptible to premature aging caused by harmful and harsh UV rays. 

What you can wear:

These 10 health benefits of wearing sunglasses should give you more reason to include a pair in your daily OOTD. After all, good health doesn’t start and stop with just one part of your body; the ultimate goal is to care for yourself inside and out.

Eyewear available in all Ideal Vision branches.