Specsavers in St Annes is urging local residents to protect their eyes from harmful ultraviolet rays by getting their sunglasses checked in store.
At this time of year, local specs wearers will flock to buy sunglasses to shield their eyes, but many are still unaware of the consumer symbols they should be looking out for, and as a result could be putting their sight in danger.
Edwin Shield, store director at Specsavers in St Annes, says: ‘Many are unaware that throwaway-fashionable sunglasses without the correct CE marks could endanger sight more than not wearing sunglasses at all. This is because the dark lenses cause our pupils to widen and let more light in, but without the UV filter, this could increase the risk of certain eye conditions over the long term.
‘Children’s eyes are particularly at risk of damage, as they have larger pupils and clearer lenses in the eye than adults which allows more UV to penetrate. Kids should wear sunglasses as soon as they will keep them on, normally from around the age of two.
‘Consumers need to ensure that they look out for the CE kite mark and that sunglasses are marked UV400. Cheaper glasses not bearing these marks might not provide adequate protection from the sun’s harmful UV rays.
‘Short term exposure to UV rays can cause photo keratitis, painful inflammation on the front of the eye. Excessive long term UV exposure has been linked to eye conditions such as age related macular degeneration and cataracts.’