Polarized sunglasses should be a staple for your patients and their eye care. While many of them are aware of polarized lenses, few know what they do or whether polarized lenses are worth it.
It’s up to you, their eye doctor, to educate patients on what they need to know about the benefits of polarized sunglasses.
Why polarized sunglasses?
Before we dive into the specifics of polarized lenses, we need to talk about why they are necessary in the first place. To do that we have to discuss our favorite celestial body of gases and light, the sun.
Waves of light enter our atmosphere in a relatively random and disorganized pattern, which is good because if they didn’t, they’d be blindingly bright. When sunlight reflects off of a surface, it focuses and causes glare and reflections. Without the correct protection, this can damage our eyes; this is where sunglasses come in.
Polarized sunglasses vs. non-polarized sunglasses
Without polarization, sunglasses don’t adequately address the issue. They simply treat all sunlight equally and offer a basic level of protection across the board.
Polarized sunglasses actively and directly address the problem of glare and focused reflections. How do polarized sunglasses work? It comes down to some chemical and mechanical magic engineering that minimizes bright reflections. This creates a more uniformly illuminated view.
While non-polarized sunglasses do offer some protection, they do not address the glare factor that can lead to dangerous situations when driving, eye strain on a bright day, and don’t hold up with the sun reflecting off of snow or water. Wearing polarized sunglasses will keep your patients safer all around.
The benefits of polarized sunglasses
The benefits of having a pair of polarized lenses are broad, especially with some of our favorite outdoor hobbies. Here are a few of the most critical perks of polarized lenses:
- Safer driving from less glare
- Less eye strain symptoms in bright sunlight
- Great protection (with trivex or a polycarbonate material)
- Reduced glare and better visibility below the surface of the water when out on the lake.
- Less glare and strain when skiing or traveling in the snow.
- 100% UV protection
Check out this free course on the benefits of polarized lenses, available to you via 20/20 Magazine and Hoya Vision Care.
A note on UV eye protection and seasonality
Many people think of sunglasses as primarily a summer accessory. We may have more need for them when the grass is green and we spend a lot of time outdoors, but polarized lenses are just as important in winter.
Winter poses unique instances of sun exposure with diffused light on overcast days and bright reflection from snowy landscapes.
Polarized lenses offer the same benefits during winter as they do during the summer. You should educate your patients year-round on the benefits, even if your concerted sunwear push is focused at the beginning of sun season.
Go polarized with your patients today
Use this content to help start the conversation around the importance of polarized lenses this sun season. You can also download our white papers that go a little more in-depth on the topic and use it with your patients in person or online.