The temperature is finally on the upswing. Time to get out those sandals, shorts, tank tops, sunscreen, and most importantly sunglasses.

One of the most important accessories for summer is a pair of good sunglasses. Your eyes deserve the best protection! Invest in sunglasses that provide good coverage from every angle, that sit close enough to your face, or are wrap-around.

Good sunglasses should also provide both UVA and UVB protection. For people that spend a lot of time outdoors or on the water, polarized lenses are also a big plus to keep those eyes protected. And of course, if you have prescription glasses, it’s always great to have a pair of stylish prescription sunglasses with all the above features too!!

Summer days are filled with fun activities, from kids soccer matches and baseball games to bike rides and sitting on the beach. Make sure you wear your sunglasses! Even better to wear a sunglass-hat combo for all sunny activities.

Just like protecting our skin with sunscreen, our corneas can get painful burns in the summer too.  Recent studies show people who do not wear sunglasses will have cataracts on average, ten years earlier than people who do wear sunglasses. Of course, don’t forget the little ones. Children as young as 6 months old need to wear sunglasses and a hat while outdoors.

Keeping your eyes safe during summer, also means wearing safety goggles when doing home renovation projects and mowing the lawn. Sports safety goggles are also as essential with ball sports like baseball, tennis, soccer, and even cricket.

When it is time to get in the water to cool off, wear tight fitting swim goggles, not only for sun protection but also to protect your eyes from chemicals and bacteria. Since it is much safer to not wear your contacts in the pool, having those prescription goggles to find your way around will make the experience more enjoyable.

Summer can be lots of fun for the whole family, if you just remember to take your activity-appropriate eye wear and sunscreen with you!

Nicole Shams, OD

Kirkland Vision Center