Glaring sunlight is harmful to the eye – long-term effects are “cataracts” and old age blindness. As the ozone layer depletes, dangerous ultraviolet radiation continues to increase. Good eye protection is therefore important because the eye remembers every ray of sunshine. According to experts at the University Clinic in Bonn, good sunglasses are not an unnecessary toy, they are also a must for children. On the other hand, the same goes with the power spectacles, such as Cartier glasses, care is mandatory and wearing is essential.
There are good reasons not to expose the eye to intense sunlight, especially in the summer months at the seaside and in the mountains. “In very strong light, we are often blinded despite the eye’s built-in protective mechanisms, but this is often ignored, especially by children,” says Professor Dr. Frank Holz, Director of the Eye Clinic at the University Hospital Bonn. However, excessive sunlight can inflame the conjunctiva or even the cornea – the acute consequence is what is known as snow blindness.
Children are particularly at risk from UV radiation
Children’s eyes in particular are particularly sensitive because their own protection is not yet fully developed and light rays fall unhindered onto the retina. This is particularly rich in so-called unsaturated fatty acids, which form free radicals when exposed to intense light. The retina is exposed to “oxidative stress”.
The human retina has many protective factors, but they can also be overused. Reading in the blazing sun is not advisable, as the sunlight reflected from the white paper is always focused on one spot in the eye.
Damage to the lens and retina
“Permanent damage to the lens and retina that impair vision is painless and only becomes noticeable for years,” says Professor Holz. Long-term effects are a clouding of the lens, the so-called cataract, or macular degeneration, a retinal disease in which the point of sharpest vision is damaged. It is the leading cause of blindness in old age. In order to avoid permanent glare sensitivity of the eyes, sunglasses should not be constantly worn indoors, among other things.
Better quality sunglasses
Only sunglasses with high-quality lenses that completely absorb dangerous UV rays can protect the eye effectively. Only a lens with a strong tint is dangerous. The human pupil expands spontaneously as a result of the darkening. “If the right filter in the blue light and ultraviolet light wavelength range is missing here, even more harmful light reaches the lens and retina,” warns Professor Holz.
When buying sunglasses, you should pay attention to quality:
- Quality features are the “UV-400” mark and the “CE” mark.
- Good glasses have no defects such as air bubbles, reflect the environment undistorted and are scratch-resistant.
- Yellow and green glasses distort the colors and the signal colors in particular are not perceived well. On the other hand, a brown or gray tint is ideal.
- A large glass protects against incidence of light from the side.
Children’s glasses should have plastic lenses
Since glass splinters when broken and the risk of injury is high, children should definitely wear sunglasses with plastic lenses. These also offer protection against possible “mechanical” accidents.
In addition to an effective UV filter, good children’s sunglasses offer additional side protection against scattered radiation from reflective surfaces. “Ideally, parents should seek advice from their ophthalmologist about fitting glasses and have the glasses tested for UV protection,” advises Professor Holz.
Sunglasses: an overview of anti-glare categories
- Category 0: 80 to 100 percent light transmission, very bright filter, for evenings
- Category 1: 43 to 80 percent light transmission, light to medium filter, well suited for overcast days and the city
- Category 2: 18 to 43 percent light transmission, dark universal filter, particularly suitable for summer, actually the perfect glare protection for our latitudes
- Category 3: 8 to 18 percent light transmission, very dark filter, well suited for southern climes, light water surfaces, the beach and the mountains
- Category 4: 3 to 8 percent light transmission, extremely dark filter, too dark for road traffic, suitable for high mountains and glaciers
Home remedies for dry eyes
Working at the computer for long periods of time or wearing contact lenses for too long can quickly lead to dry eyes and other unpleasant feelings. In addition to dryness, this can also manifest itself through burning, itching or a foreign body sensation.
Older people are particularly affected, as the production of tear fluid decreases over the years. You then suffer particularly from dry eyes and an annoying foreign body sensation. Women are also often affected, as the female sex hormone estrogen can interfere with the formation of the tear film.
If your eye is not only irritated, dry or overworked, but also reddened and made an inflammatory impression, you should consult an ophthalmologist. Burning red eyes usually require targeted therapy with anti-inflammatory eye drops, so that a visit to the doctor should not be unnecessarily delayed in the event of this symptom.
However, if the eye is rather strained, there are a number of ways to treat the dry eye yourself. But what can you do about dry eyes? Possible alternatives to eye drops and eye sprays with artificial tear fluid are home remedies. We present twelve effective home remedies for dry eyes and give you tips on how to use them.
The cucumber is probably one of the most famous home remedies for relaxing and moisturizing the eye area. The vegetables themselves are over 90 percent water and are a good way to fight dry eyes.
It is best to keep the cucumber in the refrigerator until use, as the cooling effect also contributes to relaxation and refreshment.
There are two possible ways of using the cucumber mask:
- The classic and simple form is to put two slices of cucumber directly on the eyelids.
- Another option is to puree the cucumber and then drizzle a cotton ball with the vegetable juice.
Both the cucumber slices and the cotton wool pads with the pureed cucumber are placed on the closed eyelids and can act for 12 to 20 minutes.
This remedy from the medicine cabinet is also a good method to soothe dry and stressed eyes. Quark has a cooling effect and moisturizes the skin. Experts assume that the lactic acid bacteria contained in the quark are responsible for the positive effect.
For the application, you put about a tablespoon on each closed eyelid and let the quark work until it has reached body temperature or begins to crumble. If you want, you can also wrap the quark in a cotton cloth and place it over your eyes.
It is advisable to have a clean cloth ready to wipe your eyes in advance. However, if something gets in the eye, it can simply be rinsed out with warm water.