With the Memorial Day holiday this weekend many folks can finally say “summer is here!” As the weather warms and we begin to spend more time outdoors it’s important to stop for a moment and this about protecting the health of our eyes while we are out there. In one word, SUNGLASSES. Many of us think about sunglasses as a fashion accessory but they also serve a vital role in eye health. Several studies have linked lifetime exposure to ultraviolet (UV) light to the development of cataracts and other eye problems. UV rays aren’t the only potential danger from sunlight. Recently, researchers have suggested that long-term exposure to high-energy visible (HEV) light rays, also called “blue light,” may also cause eye damage over time. In particular, some believe a high lifetime exposure to HEV light may contribute to the development of macular degeneration later in life. For these reasons we suggest that all members of the family wear a good tinted pair of sunglasses outdoors. The most common tints are gray and brown. Another good option to look for are lenses that are polarized. These have been popular with boaters and fishermen for several years due to the fact the can cut the glare coming off the water. They are actually good for everyone because polarized lenses help cut the glare reflected from a flat surface like the surface of a swimming pool or the windshield on a car. A third option to consider if you already wear glasses is Transitions lenses. These lenses are designed to tint in sunlight but be clear indoors reducing the need for two separate pairs of glasses. Finally, always make sure the glasses you are considering purchasing have noted on the lens that they are designed to block both UVA and UVB light, many fashion tints are not. We have a wide selection of both stylish and functional sunglasses on display many of which we can put your prescription into. Stop by and see us and let’s make sure you keep your eyes protected this summer.