How To Protect Your Children’s Eyes From The Sun
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What do kids love in summer? Getting outdoors of course! swimming, running around, trips to the beach, long family walks and BBQs are all part of summer fun. And while we make sure to slather our children in sunscreen to protect them from the suns rays, there is often one area that gets overlooked and that´s their eyes!
Don’t Go For Looks
Everyone is at risk for eye damage, including our kids! Children’s eyes are more susceptible to UV light than adults, thus increasing their risk of eye damage, such as cataracts and macular degeneration – two primary causes of blindness.
It’s important to get children comfortable wearing sunglasses and protecting their eyes from a young age, this is because the damage caused by UV rays often doesn’t show up until later in life.
In order for sunglasses to be effective, they must block 99-100% of both UVA and UVB rays. The style of the glasses, E.g. darker lenses, does NOT mean they provide more protection!
When Should Children Start Using Sunglasses?
As early as possible. They have specially designed sunglasses for infants like these ones from Tuga which have a strap like swimming goggles to keep the glasses secure.
How To Choose Sunglasses For Kids
If you’re unsure about the effectiveness of certain sunglasses, it is best to consult an optometrist. They will be able to help you choose sunglasses that fit your child perfectly and keep them fully protected from the suns rays. They will also be able to answer any questions you have regarding your child’s eye health.
Other Ways To Protect Children From The Sun
- Seek Shade
- Cover up – long sleeves tops/pants made of light cotton or linen will keep kids cool while offering another layer of protection
Remember even on cloudy days the suns rays can still cause damage!
What if your child wears glasses?
If your child wears glasses there is no need to worry. You can order prescription sunglasses at your local opticians.
How to encourage your child to wear sunglasses
If your child has a tendency to take off or refuse to wear sunglasses don´t get angry or insistent, try to remain calm, trust me the more you try the more they will refuse! Instead, try some of these ideas
- Get your child to help choose a pair of sunglasses and make a big deal of it.
- Show them it´s cool to wear sunglasses like their favorite cartoon, celebrity, athlete etc.
- Be the example… wear them yourself. Younger kids especially want to copy their parents.
- When they do wear them, praise them!