Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Protect those eyes from UV rays.

The Miami Herald (6/30, Asuaje) reported that, according to Tim Murray, MD, of the University of Miami's Bascom Palmer Eye Institute, "both types of ultraviolet radiation -- UVA and UVB -- can damage various parts of the eye," which "can cause cataracts and an increased risk of macular degeneration." In addition, "extreme UV exposure can also cause growths on and around the eyes, and an increased risk of cancer in the tissues around the eye and the eye itself, he said." To reduce the risk of sun-related eye damage in children and adults, "the American Optometric Association recommends" sunglasses that "absorb at least 99 percent of UV rays, a number verified by the FDA that can be found on the labels attached to sunglasses." And, "for those who spend extended periods of time outdoors," the AOA "recommends wearing wrap-around sunglasses that cover the temple area, as light can enter the eyes from the sides of the face." In fact, optometrist Judi Schaffer, OD, "often recommends polarized sunglasses to her patients because they are the best for blocking out harmful rays."

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