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Keeping Your Eyes Safe From the Sun

By Brandi Goodman

Healthy Vision Month and UV Safety Month both take place in July. The two "awareness holidays" easily pair together. Just as the sun can damage your skin, it can also have serious consequences for your eyesight. You need to know how to keep your eyes safe from the sun so your vision is not impaired because of it. 

Avoid Looking Directly at the Sun

The sun shines brightly above us. It might feel like it's inevitable that you'll end up looking up at it. You should really try your best not to, though. Avoid looking directly at the sun, because doing so allows the UV rays to penetrate right into your retinas. Train yourself to look forward and around you only, and not up at the sky. If you do look up, keep your eyes covered as much as possible, whether with a hand over your eyes or sunglasses on.

Wear Special Sunglasses

Sunglasses are a must when you're outdoors. A cheap pair won't suffice, though. You should be buying special sunglasses that offer UV protection instead. These give you the best chance of keeping your vision fine despite the brightness of the sun on a hot day. 

Wear a Hat or Visor

Wearing a hat or visor when you're outside is also beneficial for your eyesight. It will help to block some of the sun's rays from your face and eyes, keeping you protected. You'll want the hat for some personal shade anyways, so be sure you're always wearing one when you head out. It may be wise to keep a spare in your car so you always have something available when you really need it.

Avoid the Outdoors on High UV Days

You're able to check the UV index online. You should always do so before making plans to be outdoors. On high UV days, it's best to stay inside and avoid going out if at all possible. The rays will be incredibly strong and can cause serious damage to your skin and eyes on these occasions. Look for days with a green or yellow indicator, meaning the UV index is low to moderate. You can search by zip code on the EPA website to find the information you need.

Remember, these tips don't only apply to July. Now may be the time where awareness is brought to the subject, but you should be following these ideals all year long. Whether the sun appears to be shining brightly or not, its harmful UV rays are always lurking, ready to cause lasting damage to your vision if you aren't careful. 

To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Fontana, Calif.

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