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During one of your eye exam visits, your doctor might have told you about wearing sunglasses that block ultraviolet (UV) light, especially when going out on a hot summer day. Even when the sky is overcast, it still pays to wear a pair of these to shield your eyes from the harmful effects of UV radiation.

It’s worth noting, however, that not all sunglasses have UV-blocking capabilities. Here’s how you can tell if the pair of sunglasses you wear regularly are truly providing UV protection.

About Sunglasses With UV 400 Protection

Sunglasses with the label UV 400 means that they can block nearly 100% of UV rays. The number comes from the fact that UVA and UVB rays, which are the harmful types of UV radiation, come in wavelengths measuring up to 400 nanometers. For sunglasses to be deemed UV-protective, it must block 99% of these harmful UV rays and up to 90% of visible light. When looking to purchase a new pair of sunglasses, ask your optometrist  from your trusted eye care center if they offer those that come with the UV 400 label.

What to Look for in UV-Protective Sunglasses

To further enhance UV protection, consider sunglasses that come in wraparound style frames. This particular configuration helps shield your eyes from UV rays from all angles. Larger lenses also help, but be sure to take note of certain features as you make your selection. Polarized lenses, for instance, have special filters that reduce glare from reflected light. However, these aren’t necessarily capable of protecting your eyes from UV radiation.

Dark-tinted lenses also don’t mean your sunglasses are considered UV-protective. Wearing such, in fact, can cause your pupils to dilate, allowing more light to enter your eyes than if you don’t wear your sunglasses at all. They filter out ambient light and glare, and not much else. Be sure to ask your eye care specialist to help you find the best pair of sunglasses that offer top-notch UV protection.

Turn to Spectrum Eye Care for high-quality services, from designer frames to post-op care following LASIK eye surgery. Call us today at (704) 543-9000, or fill out our contact form to set an appointment. We serve residents of Charlotte, NC, and the surrounding communities.