By our Smarty friends at Charlotte Eye Ear Nose & Throat Associates
Kids spend more time outside then most adults. “Most of us acquire nearly 80% of our lifetime ultraviolet exposure before the age of 18 says Jay Russell, Manager of the Optical Department at Charlotte Eye Ear Nose and Throat Associates.” It is important to start a healthy habit of wearing sunglasses at a young age. Ultraviolet rays from the sun cause damage to the eyes that begin in childhood. Sun exposure, without protection, over time can lead to diseases such as cataracts, growths on the eye and cancer.
Most babies and toddlers tend to resist wearing sunglasses and pull them off. A visor or hat may be an easier choice to keep sun out of your little ones eyes. Your child may be more willing to wear sunglasses if he or she can pick them out. Not just any sunglasses will do though. They need to have a label stating that it blocks 100% of UVA and UVB rays and they need to wrap around the child’s face. If your child wears sunglasses that do not block UVA and UVB rays, it actually is worse for their eyes as it causes the pupils to dilate which lets more UVA and UVB rays in. When looking for a pair of sunglasses for your child, they do not have to be the most expensive pair. Quality, non-prescription sunglasses for kids can be found in the $8-$10 price range and up. Be sure to double check that the sunglasses provide 100% UV protection. If your child currently wears eye glasses, you can have prescription sunglasses made. Make sure you wear sunglasses too for protection and to set a good example.
Jay Russell is the Manager of the Optical and Contact Lens Department at Charlotte Eye Ear Nose and Throat Associates and is the father of 3 children.
Charlotte Eye Ear Nose & Throat Associates
6035 Fairview Road
Charlotte, NC 28210
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