Sunglasses: A cool way to protect your kids’ eyes

If your child’s been pestering you for a pair of “sunnies” this summer because everyone’s wearing them or because they’ll make me look SO cool, Mom (or Dad), then you should probably give in. Okay maybe their argument doesn’t hold water and it’s your right as parent to say “no” to fads and trends. But while your child might not be too aware of or concerned about it, these sunglasses they’re asking for can actually do them good. Apart from making them look with it, that is.

Of course before anything else, the pair they choose has to be UV-protected. There are many age-related eye conditions that stem from UV radiation from the sun such as macular degeneration, one of the leading causes of vision loss in older Americans, and cataracts. As such, it’s best to protect one’s eyes from exposure to UV rays as early as possible.

Besides which, children typically spend more times outdoors (and therefore under the sun) compared to the average adult, and they’re also more susceptible to damage to the retina because UV rays can more easily penetrate a child’s lens than an adult’s.

These reasons make springing for high-quality, UV-protected sunglasses for your child an actual investment. Take note, however, that there are many pairs sold mostly for style and aren’t actually UV-protected or don’t block enough UV rays. To make sure you’re getting sunglasses that offer the correct amount of UV protection, you can check with your eye doctor for help in determining the UV blocking levels of the sunglasses you’re getting.

In choosing a good pair of sunglasses for your child, find shades that are capable of blocking about 100% of UVA and UVB rays. UVA rays aid in the development of cataracts and macular degeneration by making your eyes (and skin age) while UVB causes photokeratitis (corneal sunburn) when you’re overexposed to it.

Apart from getting lenses that provide 100% protection, you can also look for polycarbonate lenses. These lenses are more impact-resistant than your typical plastic lenses which make them safer to use when playing sports or during general roughhousing sessions. Also, polycarbonate lenses are more comfortable than glass or plastic lenses.

It’s also recommended to get a pair of sunglasses with flexible frames and spring hinges. Some metal or plastic frames get warped or bent out of shape, making them less comfortable to wear as time goes on. Also, flexible frames help protect your child from injuries that a non-flexible frame might otherwise cause during impact. Spring hinges, on the other hand, will keep the glasses snug-fitting so they don’t fall off.

Especially for younger or more carefree kids, having the glasses attached to a band will keep your children from losing their sunglasses. That said, in the case of babies or toddlers, make sure the cord isn’t made of material that might accidentally choke them. Or better yet, don’t keep the glasses with them when they’re unsupervised.

So you see, there’s no trouble in giving in to this request if you can make sure that your child will choose a pair that’s high quality and UV-protected, in addition to cool-looking. A reputable optical shop or eyecare specialist will usually stock great quality eyewear for all ages, as well as offer sound recommendations on what you should get.

Those in Greenacres, Florida can drop by Planet Vision Eyecare Co. to find all kinds of sunglasses and eyeglasses of various styles, brands, and fits. Whether you’re looking for Garfield sunnies to Ray-Bans, you can find it in Planet Vision Eyecare Co.

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