The peak daily ultraviolet radiation level changes over the year, the strongest being at the time of the Summer Solstice (21st June) which is rapidly approaching. Children receive three times the annual sun exposure of adults, increasing their susceptibility to UV eye damage. UV damage is both cumulative and irreversible, so it is important to protect children’s eyes as early as possible because sun-related eye damage occurs in the early ages of childhood, particularly between the ages of 3 and 12.
David Cartwright, Chairman of Eye Health UK, comments: “We should all be aware of the harm UV can do to our eye health. Popping on a pair of sunglasses when slapping on the sunscreen is a habit that would benefit us all and prevent future avoidable sight loss.
David continues: “Ideally all children and adults should wear good quality sunglasses and a peaked hat when spending any time outdoors. The simple precaution of ensuring children wear sunglasses will help reduce a child’s chance of developing eye problems such as macular degeneration and cancer of the eyelids later in life. It’s especially important for parents to safeguard their children’s eyes when they are playing on the beach or by water where there is a lot of reflected light.”
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