Why low winter sun can damage eyes
25th January 2017
If you go for a morning or late afternoon run, Luke Arundel, spokesperson for Optometry Australia, has pointed that whilst it’s important to wear sunglasses any time the sun is out it’s the ‘shoulder periods’ of the day, when the sun is lower on the horizon, that we’re actually getting more UV radiation. He said, “When the sun is directly above us, the brow knocks a lot of those UV rays, but when it’s lower on the horizon we are getting UV radiation directly inside the eye.” He said this tip applies all year round, “even when it’s cold or overcast as we still can get up to 90 percent of UV radiation on days when it’s cloudy so sunglasses should be worn all day year round.”
Mr Arundel went on to say that anyone not wearing sunglasses outdoors on a regular basis is risking serious damage to their eyes; the outcome of which can lead to:
Macular degeneration: The macular, which sits at the back of the eye, is responsible for central vision and is thought to be linked to exposure to bright sunlight. Macular degeneration results in severe vision impairment.
Cataracts: Cataracts occur when the lens of the eye goes cloudy, causing blurred vision and eventual blindness. While cataracts are linked with ageing, up to 20 percent of cataract cases are caused by UV exposure.