How to choose sunglasses that protect your eyes and eyesight

How to choose sunglasses that protect your eyes and eyesight
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Sunglasses are often thought of primarily as a fashion accessory or a way to hide tired eyes. But they can actually play an important role in protecting your eyes and the skin around them from the harmful effects of ultraviolet (UV) rays emitted by the sun.

We spoke with Andrew Iwach, MD, clinical spokesperson for the American Academy of Ophthalmology and executive director of the Glaucoma Center in San Francisco, about the health benefits of wearing sunglasses and how to choose the right pair for you.

Why sunglasses are important

Regularly wearing sunglasses outdoors and in cars can help prevent conditions such as macular degeneration, cataracts, certain eye and eyelid cancers, as well as photokeratitis (sunburn of the eyes), which can cause temporary pain, redness, , blurred vision and sensitivity to light.

Sunglasses that wrap around the temples can also help relieve dry eye symptoms and sensitivity associated with conditions such as thyroid eye disease. And wearing a hat with a brim will prevent more UV rays from reaching your eyes and eyelids.

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