UV Eye Safety Month


July is UV Eye Safety Month, a crucial time to raise awareness about the dangers of ultraviolet (UV) radiation to our eyes. While many are aware of the risks UV rays pose to our skin, few recognise the potential harm they can inflict on our vision. Prolonged exposure to UV radiation can lead to serious eye conditions, making protection essential.

The Dangers of UV Radiation

UV radiation, a component of sunlight, comes in two main forms that can damage our eyes: UVA and UVB rays. Both types can contribute to various eye problems.


Often referred to as “sunburn of the eye,” this painful condition is caused by intense UV exposure. Symptoms include redness, tearing, and a feeling of grit in the eyes.


Long-term exposure to UV rays can accelerate the development of cataracts, a clouding of the eye’s lens, leading to vision impairment and potential blindness.

Macular Degeneration

This age-related condition, which can be exacerbated by UV exposure, affects the retina and is a leading cause of blindness in older adults.


Known as “surfer’s eye”, this growth on the white part of the eye can extend onto the cornea, potentially obstructing vision.

Preventive Measures

Wear Sunglasses

Choose sunglasses that block 100% of UVA and UVB rays. Wrap-around styles offer additional protection by preventing rays from entering the sides. Choose the best sunglasses for you here

Use a Broad-Brimmed Hat

A hat with at least a 3-inch brim can significantly reduce the amount of UV radiation that reaches your eyes.

Seek Shade

Whenever possible, stay in the shade, especially during peak sunlight hours from 10am to 4pm.

Avoid Sunbeds

These devices emit UV radiation that can be even more intense than natural sunlight.

Wear UV blocking Contact Lenses

If you wear contact lenses, ask your eye care provider about lenses that offer UV protection.

Special Considerations for Children

Children’s eyes are more susceptible to UV damage due to their larger pupils and clearer lenses, which allow more UV rays to penetrate. Ensure that kids wear appropriate sunglasses and hats when outdoors.