Leading optical group Specsavers Opticas have offered the following advice for keeping eyes healthy, protected and looking great this summer.
Protect your eyes from the sun – We can burn our eyes the same way we can burn our skin. Sunburn of the cornea (the eye’s surface), hugely increases the risk of bad eye health later on, as well as being rather painful. Staring directly into the sun light, even briefly, can permanently scar the retina, which is solely responsible for vision, and many of us do it without realising.
Exposure to the sun’s harmful rays can lead to cataracts, macular degeneration, eyelid skin cancer, pinguecula and pterygium. Wearing sunglasses and a hat is the best way to protect the eyes from the sun, however not all sunglasses provide sufficient protection from damaging UV rays. To ensure adequate sun protection, choose sunglasses that meet industry standards and carry the ‘CE’ mark, which indicates these shades have met the necessary requirements for the European market.
Wear goggles – If you regularly swim in the pool, protect your eyes from the chlorine with goggles, as too much exposure to chlorine can irritate the eyes leaving them blurry and red. If your eyes are sore, try an eye rinse or saline eye drops from the chemist to relieve them.
Be careful of sand and small objects getting into your eye and follow the right steps to remove them – It is easy for sand or small objects to get into your eye when you’re enjoying swimming and spending time on the beach. If this happens take the following steps:
- Try not to rub your eyes as this could scratch the cornea
- Do not rinse your eyes with running water, the eye will water to flush out the object naturally
- If it is still painful and you think the object is still in your eye, go to your nearest opticians who will try to locate and remove the object
- If this does not help you, the Optometrist will refer you to the specialist in the nearest hospital, who will take out the object and prescribe you an ointment to heal any damage caused
You should seek professional advice if you are concerned about your eye health, or are in any discomfort and have regular eye tests. Specsavers Opticas are raising money for the ONCE Foundation for the Deaf and Blind until the end of the year and asking for a donation of just 1€ for a comprehensive eye test. Visit www.specsavers.es to find your nearest store and book your eye test.