Don’t Forget your Sunglasses!

by Julie Motchok on June 27, 2016

By now, you probably understand the importance of sunscreen and how it helps to prevent dangerous skin cancer like Melanoma.  Did you know sunglasses are just as important to your health when spending time out in the sun?  The UV rays that have damaging effects on our skin can take a toll on our eyes as well and cause things like:

  • Cataracts, a clouding of the eye’s lens that can blur vision. An estimated 20% of cases are caused by extended UV exposure.
  • Macular degeneration, resulting from damage to the retina that destroys central vision. Macular degeneration is the leading cause of blindness in the United States.
  • Pterygium, a tissue growth over the white part of the surface of the eye that can alter the curve of the eyeball, causing astigmatism.

sunnies

It is important wear sunglasses to protect your eyes.  However, avoid buying new sunglasses just for the way they look.  According to the Mayo Clinic, you should try to follow these guidelines when purchasing new sunglasses:

  1. Label should indicate 99 or 100 percent UV protection.
  2. Look for sunglasses that are close fitting to prevent UV rays from filtering in
  3. Look for larger lenses that cover the entire eye (including the eyelid) to prevent light or other harmful substances from entering the eye
  4. Don’t be misguided by price—higher priced safety sunglasses usually reflect fashion, not UV protection
  5. Know that dark-colored sunglasses don’t necessarily provide better protection, because the chemical coating applied to the lens responsible for UV protection is clear.

However, different lens tints (with the proper UV protection) filter different wavelengths of light.  You should pick the tint of lens based on your needs. Here are some things to consider:

  • Green: Allows true color perception and good contrast in bright light; reduces eyestrain in bright light.
  • Gray:  Allows true color perception, but does not enhance contrast; good for cycling or running.
  • Brown:  Good in hazy sun, enhances contrast; good for high-glare environments.
  • Amber:  Brightens cloudy, hazy, or foggy skies; excellent for contrast; minimizes eyestrain; dis­torts color (images look yellow-orange).
  • Yellow:  Improves contrast and depth perception in low light; good for overcast days.
  • Red:  Excellent depth perception in low light; contrast objects against blue or green back­grounds.
  • Mirrored:  Reflects high-intensity light to reduce glare; available in various colors.

 

Information from:

http://www.tdi.texas.gov/pubs/videoresource/fssunglasses.pdf

https://nei.nih.gov/hvm/healthy_eyes_glasses

{ 0 comments }

Skin Safety

by Erika Solloway on June 20, 2016

hat

 

Summer is the time of year when everyone tries to soak up as much as possible before fall and winter creep up. While enjoying the warmth and sunshine of the summer months, check out some skin safety tips to keep in mind. Since sunlight is the main source of harmful UV rays, protecting your skin is vital.

Seek shade! This may seem obvious, but even on a cloudy or hazy day the strength of UV rays are still extremely strong and you can still get a sunburn. Some UV rays can also pass through windows, like when you’re driving in your car or sitting by the window doing some reading. Having tinted windows can help, but you are still at risk. Seeking out an area not directly exposed to any UV rays will protect your skin the most.

Protect your skin with clothing! While you’re spending time outside, be sure to cover as much skin as possible. You may be thinking, “Why cover myself up when it’s so hot out?” Cotton is an extremely breathable fabric, as well as other activewear materials being made for outdoor activities. Dark colors provide more protection than light colors, and tightly woven fabrics are best.

Use sunscreen! When you’re choosing a sunscreen product, make sure you check out the label. Sunscreens with broad spectrum protection (against both UVA and UVB rays) and with sun protection factor (SPF) values of 30 or higher are recommended. The higher you go in SPF numbers, like 15, 30, or 50, means more protection. No sunscreen protects you completely. Check to make sure the sunscreen will protect you while you’re in water, and for how long, as well as how it does when you’re sweating. Reading closely for the expiration dates is also extremely important, because after about 2-3 years most products aren’t good anymore. Where you store your sunscreen is also important, because the heat of it being stored in the trunk of your car will make it expire much faster than if it’s kept in an air conditioned area.

Wear a hat and sunglasses! A hat with a brim that goes all the way around protects areas of skin often forgotten about like the tips of your ears and back of your neck. Wearing a hat can also shield your eyes from the sun’s harmful rays. Sunglasses that are UV blocking are crucial. The skin around your eyes is very delicate, as well as your eyes themselves. UV protection in sunglasses comes from an invisible chemical in or applied to the lenses, so be sure to thoroughly check out a new pair before you purchase them.

With these skin safety tips in mind, enjoy your summer!

 

Source of information: http://www.cancer.org/cancer/cancercauses/sunanduvexposure/skincancerpreventionandearlydetection/skin-cancer-prevention-and-early-detection-u-v-protection

 

{ 0 comments }

Go Somewhere New!

June 13, 2016

Don’t spend your summer wondering what’s going on, get out there and experience all that Massachusetts has to offer! This list includes a few family friendly events for you to check out.   World Oceans Day celebrations will be held at the New England Aquarium in Boson June 5th from 11am-3pm. There will be hands-on […]

Read the full article →

Running Safety

June 6, 2016

Summertime and warm weather means you are finally able to take your workout to the streets. Before you hit the road, here are some tips to keep you safe while running outside. *Don’t forget to check with a healthcare professional before starting any exercise program*   Let someone know When taking your run outdoors, let […]

Read the full article →

Make the Most out of Summer

May 30, 2016

Summertime is a great opportunity to start something new and take it with you into the next school year.  People who regularly meditate show lower anxiety levels, improved memory and increased self-awareness.  Meditation is a great relaxation strategy that can be used anytime and almost anywhere. Meditation is an acquired skill and requires practice.  It […]

Read the full article →

What’s in season right now?

May 23, 2016

Blueberries, Blackberries, Raspberries, and Strawberries!   With these sweet berries, you can make smoothies, top off your oatmeal, add them to pancakes, or even sprinkle some on top of your salad for a fresh, summer taste. Locally, you can pick your own berries at Ward’s Berry Farm, located at 614 South Main Street in Sharon, […]

Read the full article →

Congrats Grad!

May 16, 2016

Congratulations! You did it!  Graduating from college is a tremendous achievement and you should be so proud of all you’ve accomplished during your time at BSU.  You may be going off to grad school or beginning a new job this summer, but don’t forget to relax- you’ve earned it! Moving back home and beginning what […]

Read the full article →

Be Smart for Summer

May 9, 2016

  Summertime is finally here and that usually means going home and reuniting with family and old friends.  You and/or your friends at home may choose to drink alcohol.  It can be easy to get caught up and forget about sticking to your limits and designating a sober driver.  Did you know that alcohol related […]

Read the full article →

Using Your Summer Wisely

May 2, 2016

Summer vacation is a great time to de-stress, travel, and tackle a to-do list you’ve long forgotten about. If you’re looking for new things to do, try one of the following! Find a farmers’ market! Summer is the season when everything grows ripe and delicious, so why not stop by a local farm to gather […]

Read the full article →

Don’t Sweat it!

April 20, 2016

You’re almost done with the semester! However, before packing up your dorm room or walking across the graduation stage, you have to make it through dreaded finals.  Papers, projects and final exams at the end of the semester always seem to pile up so quickly.  It is important to cope with your stress in a […]

Read the full article →