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How can wearing sunglasses help keep your eyes healthy?

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The right pair of shades will help protect your eyes from the sun's ultraviolet (UV) rays. Too much UV exposure boosts your chances of cataracts and macular degeneration.

Choose a pair that blocks 99% to 100% of UVA and UVB rays. Wraparound lenses help protect your eyes from the side. Polarized lenses reduce glare while you drive, but don’t necessarily offer added protection.

If you wear contact lenses, some offer UV protection. It's still a good idea to wear sunglasses for an extra layer.

SOURCES:

National Eye Institute: "Eye Health Tips."

American Optometric Association: "Proper Nutrition Is Critical to Eye Health," "Antioxidants and Age-Related Eye Disease," "Diabetes Is the Leading Cause of Blindness Among Most Adults," "Good Vision Throughout Life," "Recommended Eye Exam Frequency for Pediatric Patients and Adults," "Shopping Guide for Sunglasses," "UV Protection With Contact Lenses," "Glaucoma," "Computer Vision Syndrome."

Archives of Ophthalmology, September 2007.

National Eye Institute: "Facts About Diabetic Retinopathy," "Finding the Right Eye Protection."

Prevent Blindness.org: "Vision Problems in the U.S."

AllAboutVision: "Eye Exam Costs and When to Have an Eye Exam."

Medline Plus: "Nicotine Addiction and Withdrawal."

Reviewed by Whitney Seltman on May 29, 2020

SOURCES:

National Eye Institute: "Eye Health Tips."

American Optometric Association: "Proper Nutrition Is Critical to Eye Health," "Antioxidants and Age-Related Eye Disease," "Diabetes Is the Leading Cause of Blindness Among Most Adults," "Good Vision Throughout Life," "Recommended Eye Exam Frequency for Pediatric Patients and Adults," "Shopping Guide for Sunglasses," "UV Protection With Contact Lenses," "Glaucoma," "Computer Vision Syndrome."

Archives of Ophthalmology, September 2007.

National Eye Institute: "Facts About Diabetic Retinopathy," "Finding the Right Eye Protection."

Prevent Blindness.org: "Vision Problems in the U.S."

AllAboutVision: "Eye Exam Costs and When to Have an Eye Exam."

Medline Plus: "Nicotine Addiction and Withdrawal."

Reviewed by Whitney Seltman on May 29, 2020

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How can using safety eyewear help keep your eyes healthy?

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