04.07.2011

Sunglasses "should be worn over contact lenses"

Sunglasses "should be worn over contact lenses"

By Alexa Kaczka

Contact lens wearers need to remember to wear sunglasses over the products whenever they are out in the sun, even if they are special UV contacts, one expert has advised.

Speaking to news-medical.net, Dr Christopher Starr, an ophthalmologist at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital/Weill Cornell Medical Center, said it is vital that people take steps to ensure their eyes are protected this year, particularly with the hot weather predicted for this summer.

He noted that some people are often at higher risk from the sun due to certain eye conditions, which can be significantly exacerbated by UV rays.

"People with retinal disorders, cataract surgery patients, people with light-coloured eyes, and those taking medications that increase eye sensitivity to light should take extra steps to protect their eyes from the sun in the summer and all year round," Dr Starr told the website.

Dr Stephen Trokel, an ophthalmologist at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital/Columbia University Medical Center, added that research has suggested there are links between sunlight exposure and some eye conditions so it is important people take steps to safeguard themselves.

He also told news-medical.net that sunglasses need to be worn over contact lenses, even UV ones, in combination with other protective measures, such as a wide-brimmed hat.

"Any protective eyewear should have side-shield protection or [should] wrap around the eye so light cannot enter the eye from side reflections," the expert noted.

A great way to safeguard vision over the summer is to invest in some sunglasses which offer total UV protection, the experts added, with these products often being labelled 'UV400'.

Other than that, children should be well protected from the sun with the likes of hats and shades, while any lens tints on sunglasses need to be checked to ensure they block 80 per cent of transmissible light but no more than 90 to 92 per cent of light, the specialists told the website.

Recently, San Francisco optometrist Clifford Lee, speaking to ABC Local, said people who wear UV contact lenses may find that it is safer to combine them with sunglasses.

by Martin Burns


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