The Advantages of Prescription Sunglasses
Why wear sunglasses?
Sunglasses provide not only comfort on bright, sunny days, but also essential UV protection for your eyes. Many people are aware of what harmful UV rays can do to their skin, but don't realize their eyes are at risk too. Proper sunglasses are as essential for an outing as sunscreen, even on an overcast day. Make sure any sunglasses you buy offer 100% UV protection.
What if I already have prescription eyeglasses or contacts?
Clip-on or magnetic sun lenses usually offer adequate protection, but are also easily misplaced. You might find that prescription sunglasses are easier to locate as you're running out the door, or when the sun unexpectedly comes your way while driving.
If your regular glasses have photochromic lenses (sometimes called "transition lenses"), you will likely not need prescription sunglasses for the outdoors, but you may need them in your car. Most car windshields block UV rays, which are required to activate the tint in the lenses, so your lenses may not darken enough while you're behind the wheel.
If you usually wear contact lenses, you may be tempted to forgo prescription sunglasses in favor of cheaper non-prescription ones, but remember that contacts are not appropriate for all situations. If you go somewhere sandy, windy, dusty, or where water will get in your eyes, these conditions can cause serious damage to your eyes if you are wearing contacts. Airborne particles can become trapped between the contact lens and your eye, irritating and scratching the cornea, and organisms in the water can attach to your lenses, causing an eye infection.
If cost is a major concern, ask about special offers the next time you're purchasing eyeglasses. Many retailers will offer you a discount if you buy prescription sunglasses at the same time. They may be a lot cheaper than you expect.
Frame and lens options
Prescription sunglasses come in a huge variety of styles, from inexpensive casual frames to trendy, fashion and high-end designer sunglasses. For the frequent swimmers, there are even prescription swimming goggles. You can find almost any style of regular sunglasses as prescription glasses.
The one exception is wraparound sunglasses. Some wraparound glasses have such extreme curves that they would interfere with the optics of the prescription lenses, distorting vision. However, there are a few manufacturers that do make prescription wraparound shades, though both the frame curves and the prescription range are somewhat limited.
Lenses for prescription sunglasses are available in wide variety of materials and tints. Tint color and darkness is unrelated to UV protection, so even those light blue glasses you have your eye on can give you the 100% UV protection you need.
Protect your eyes without sacrificing style and convenience. Visit your local optician to find out your options for prescription sunglasses.
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