The Canadian Ophthalmological Society is warning Canadians that just because your skin is covered up it doesn't mean the danger is too. Just like you have to wear sunglasses in the blazing heat of a summer day you should also be keeping your eyes away from the harmful UV rays from above even when it s cold. Light glinting off the snow and pavement can potentially damage your vision effectively creating a sunburn in your eye. The immediate effects may fade after a while but prolonged exposure can take its toll on you as you age damaging your lens and your retina and leading to the development of cataracts and macular degeneration.
What can you do? Here are some ways to make sure your eyes have it - no matter what the season.
- Wear sunglasses that offer protection from all harmful rays including UVA UVB and UVC
- Try the wrap-around kind that can completely shield you from the sun s rays
- Don t be fooled by the colour of the sunglasses you buy - it s their overall protection that matters. Dark lenses don t mean it s an adequate safeguard on its own
- Wear hats with a brim that properly cover the eyes and keep the rays out
- Avoid staring at bright snow or reflecting pavement just like you wouldn't look at the sun for too long a time.