We talk a lot about sunscreen and sun protective clothing here at Cabana Life. We’ve even mentioned the importance of wearing sunglasses to protect your eyes from harmful UV rays.
Do you want to know something about sunglasses that will knock your socks off?
(Or maybe you just won't be able to believe your eyes.)
The UV protection in sunglasses can expire. Yeah, we know. We were surprised too.
In August 2016, a study was published that reported on the results of tests conducted on the lenses of sunglasses. A major conclusion drawn from the study is that sunglasses lose UV protection over time.
This can be caused by several factors. One is general wear and tear. Even microscopic scratches can allow damaging radiation to penetrate your eyes.
The authors of the study also reported that exposure to the sun over time can deteriorate UV protection.
If you notice that your lenses are getting lighter, that means that they are losing their UV protection. Ditch them for a new pair of UV-blocking sunnies.
If you don’t wear the right kind of eye protection, you can damage the cornea and the internal eye structures. This can lead to retina damage, cataracts and edema. If your sunglasses don’t protect against broad-spectrum UV rays, your skin can begin to age before its time. Plus, if you’re squinting, you can exacerbate the wrinkles around your eyes.
Make sure that you wear sunglasses that are dark enough to allow you to open your eyes normally, and don’t wear them forever.
How Often Should You Replace Your Sunglasses?
Because sunglasses lose UV protection the more you wear them in the sun, the answer to "how often should you replace your sunglasses" depends on how often you wear them.
The study found that most people in Brazil wear their sunglasses for about two hours a day. If you find that you wear your sunglasses about this much, you should replace them every two years. If you wear your sunglasses more often or work in the sun, you should replace them even more frequently.
Kids’ sunglasses help to protect your little ones’ eyes from the sun. Consider making wearing sunglasses part of your child’s “going outside” routine.