We mention protecting your eyes a lot. Just look at our logo, and you’ll see “Protecting your eyes with style”. Most people aren’t aware of the danger the sun poses to you eyes. Today, we’re looking at how your eyes really can get sunburned. Sunburned eyes is known medically as Photokeratitis.

What Causes Sunburned Eyes?

Simply put, too much exposure to UV light can burn your eyes. The sun releases 3 kinds of UV rays: UV-A, UV-B, and UV-C. The ozone layer protects us from the bulk of these rays. However, UV-A and UV-B still make their way to the surface.

The damage to your eyes can appear in the following areas:

  • the thin, surface layer of the cornea
  • retina
  • lens
  • conjunctiva

What Are The Symptoms?

Symptoms vary depending on how much UV exposure is involved. The intensity and number of symptoms increases with exposure and can include the following:

  • gritty feeling, as if you have sand in your eyes
  • eye pain
  • headache
  • twitching sensation in the eyelid
  • tearing
  • swelling
  • redness
  • blurry vision
  • sensitivity to bright light
  • seeing halos
  • constricted, pinpoint pupils
  • temporary vision loss or color changes in your vision (these symptoms are rare)

How to Avoid Sunburned Eyes

We need to protect the eyes that we have. The best means of doing that is through the use of sunglasses. Not all sunglasses are equal. Cheaper sunglasses found at big box stores can’t compare to a high-quality pair with UV blocking lenses. Your sunglasses must block both UV-A and UV-B rays while letting in a proper amount of light.

Sadly, the effects of UV-A and UV-B rays won’t show up until you’re older. At that point, the damage is done. That’s why it’s critical that you protect your eyes every time you step outside. Even if the sky looks overcast, you should still wear sunglasses. UV rays will make it through cloud cover anyway.

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