(Editor’s note: This content is provided by VSP Vision Care, a Next Avenue sponsor.)
The summer months are finally here and it’s time to enjoy warm weather, outdoor barbecues and afternoons on the patio. However, all these outdoor activities mean that you must take extra precautions to protect your eyes from over-exposure to the elements.
Taking preventative eye care measures to prevent damage is a simple way to maintain healthy eyes all summer long. Read on for three ways to protect your eyes this season.
Before Going Outside
Protecting your eyes from harmful rays starts before you even leave the house. If you’re prepping for a day in the sun, make sure you bring along sunglasses and a wide-brimmed hat or visor.
Extended exposure to harsh UV rays is linked to eye damage, including cataracts and temporary vision loss.
When purchasing sunglasses, opt for ones that block 99 to 100 percent of UV-A and UV-B radiation and have large lenses or wraparound frames. Pick a hat with a wide brim that shades your entire face. And just like that, you have simple and effective (and stylish) eye protection.
While You’re Outdoors
Keep your water bottle handy! Hydration is essential to protecting your vision. The Institute of Medicine recommends women consume 91 ounces of water a day, while men are recommended to drink 125 ounces a day. If you’re outside during peak sun hours, which are between 10am and 2pm, make sure you have enough fluids to remain well-hydrated.
And how does that relate to your eyes, you ask? Well, dehydration can make it difficult for eyes to produce adequate moisture and tears, potentially causing dry eye symptoms. Dry eyes can be uncomfortable and can lead to more severe eye issues if ignored, so drink enough water and help keep your eyes in the clear while you’re spending time outdoors.
When You’re Home
Take proactive steps to manage your eye health and schedule your annual eye exam. Consistent annual eye exams are essential to maintaining your eye health and preventing future eye damage. If you haven’t seen an eye doctor recently, make summer your season for a checkup.
No Matter Where You Are
Consider enrolling in a VSP® Individual Vision Plan, which covers an annual comprehensive eye exam, prescription lenses, generous allowance for new frames and access to the largest network of independent doctors. Managing your eye health with VSP can cost as little as $13 a month and deliver average savings of more than $200 a year, making it easier than ever to make eye care a priority, no matter the season.
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