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Sunglasses should be worn year-round for protection and performance. Whether they're wraparounds, rimless or studded with rhinestones, sunglasses are vital for shielding eyes from harmful ultraviolet (UV) rays and diminishing glare that can cause distractions while driving, working and playing.
As a baseline, all sunglass lenses should filter UVA and UVB rays. Other lens options are also available based on personal preference, like polarized lenses, to prevent glare or tints that offer more comfortable vision.
The moisture-resistant materials used in contemporary sunwear frames prevent wear and tear. Metals such as aluminum, stainless steel, and titanium resist corrosion and breakage. Plastics, like nylon and zyl, are light enough for all-day wear.
Plano (non-prescription) sunglasses are sold at most retail outlets. A variety of styles, shapes and colors offer something for everyone and every budget. Many varieties of sunglasses can also be customized to match your prescription at an optical shop.
Alternatives to traditional sunglasses are also available, including larger frames that fit over prescription glasses, clip-on sunglasses, flip-up lenses and photochromic lenses which change from dark outdoors to clear indoors.
The Vision Council released a report regarding the harm that UV rays do to the eyes. This report uses data from a 2013 VisionWatch study in addition to observational data gathered from everyday consumers. These studies show that although consumers know they should be protecting their eyes and vision from the sun's UV rays, they are often not taking the steps to do so. You can access the report, The Big Picture: Eye Protection is Always in Season here.
Bureau of Missing Sunglasses
A new report from The Vision Council found that more than 55 percent of adults in the United States lose or break their sunglasses every year. For these and the 27 percent of adults who do not ever wear sunglasses, exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation could end up costing them a lot more than a new pair of shades. The report, Finding Your Shades, Protecting Your Vision, outlines trends in UV-protective behaviors like sunglass use, as well as the major health effects that can occur as a result of cumulative UV exposure, and the protective measures necessary to prevent them.
The report is just one component of The Vision Council's refreshed UV protection campaign, "Bureau of Missing Sunglasses," designed to increase public understanding of the harmful effects of unprotected UV exposure and to promote wearing sunglasses, or other UV-protective eyewear, year-round.
The campaign's official website, missingsunglasses.com, shows social media updates from people around the world who have lost their sunglasses and encourages those whose shades have gone missing to share their predicament using the #BOMS hashtag. The site also features a free iPhone app, PackLists, an interactive UV map, UV indicator widget and will soon have other online and mobile tools to help people find - or keep - their sunglasses.This summer, the Bureau of Missing Sunglasses visited five cities across the U.S. between May and September. Street teams were deployed to New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, Portland and San Diego. While the specific street team activities varied my city, in each location teams distributed educational materials about the dangers of UV exposure and shopping tips for sunwear selection. Check missingsunglasses.com for up-to-date information on Bureau of Missing Sunglasses' street seam dates and locations. 2013 will bring about new destinations and adventures encouraging UV protection through protective eyewear throughout the year.
To learn more about the Bureau of Missing Sunglasses campaign, visit missingsunglasses.com.
Other Sun-Safety Tips and Resources: