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Importance of sunglasses for kids

 
Sunglasses are not only for adults. We should teach kids from an early age about the importance of wearing sunglasses so that they develop good habits that last for life. Sunglasses maybe a fun fashion accessory, but they can also save your kids skin and help prevent eye problems as they get older by blocking out the sun's powerful ultraviolet rays (UVR).
Sunglasses are not only for adults. We should teach kids from an early age about the importance of wearing sunglasses so that they develop good habits that last for life.

Sunglasses maybe a fun fashion accessory, but they can also save your kids skin and help prevent eye problems as they get older by blocking out the sun's powerful ultraviolet rays (UVR). 

Find out why you should encourage your kids to wear sunglasses and check out our guide on what sunglasses to buy.
 

Importance of sunglasses for kids

 

1. Reasons why kids should wear sunglasses


So why is it so important for kids to wear sunglasses?

Children under 10 years old are at a high risk of skin and eye damage from UVR. The skin on their eyelids and around their eyes is more delicate and vulnerable than adult skin.

Until about age 10, the lens of a child's eye is clear, allowing greater solar penetration and in turn greater UVR-induced ocular changes. As they get older, the lens starts to become more opaque, providing better protection.

Retinal exposure to UVR is associated with cataracts and macular degeneration, both causes of vision impairment.

UVR damage builds over time, so the sooner you start protecting your little one’s eyes from the sun, the lower their risk will be of ever developing future eye problems.

While children under 6 months old should never be exposed to the sun, once they reach 6 months, they should wear sunglasses outside.
 

2. 9 Tips on buying kids sunglasses


Beware, not every pair of sunglasses will do! It's important to buy the right ones.

Check out these tips when it comes to buying your kids next pair of sunglasses.

1. Look for sunglasses that block 99-100 percent of both UVA and UVB rays. There's usually a label on the sunglasses that indicates the percentage of UVR protection they provide.

2. The more skin covered, the better, so look for large, wraparound styles.

3. Choose sunglasses with playground-proof lenses. Kids will be kids as they run, trip, fall and bounce off all sorts of objects. Their sunglasses should match this active lifestyle. Find impact-resistant, scratch-proof lenses that don't pop out of the frames.

4. Avoid glass lenses, unless recommended by a doctor, plastic is safer.

5. Frames should be bendable but unbreakable. Make sure the glasses fit snugly, close to your kids face.

6. An elastic band that attaches to the end of each of the frame's earpieces can help prevent loss or damage to children's sunglasses. However, avoid ones with a band or cord that might pose a choking risk.

7. If your little one is old enough, let them choose their own sunglasses (within reason!). Children, especially as they get older, are more likely to wear the sunglasses if they choose them themselves.

8. Before you buy a pair of sunglasses, check to see that the lenses are not scratched or warped and have no other flaws that will distort your little one’s vision. Very young children may not know to complain if the glasses are flawed.

9. If your little one requires prescription glasses, they should also wear prescription sunglasses.

3. Extra protection


Whilst it's important to wear sunglasses, they only block out rays that come directly through the lenses.

The skin around your little one's eyes is still vulnerable to rays entering through the sides or from the top, or reflected upwards off snow, sand, water, etc.

Wearing a wide-brimmed hat is a good backup, blocking out many rays from above and even from the sides, whilst also shielding their face and neck.

Encourage your little one to seek shade during the sun's most intense hours, 10am to 4pm, to help provide another level of protection.
 

4. Remember


Treat sunglasses as a necessity, not just an accessory, for your children AND for yourself.

Lead by example, if your children see you wearing sunglasses, they’ll want to wear them too!

More kids articles to enjoy: Source: skincancer.org Image source: babiators
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