Children’s Eyes Need Sun Protection, Too

(NewsUSA) – No matter what season it is, skin isn’t the only thing that gets burned by sunlight. Eyes are just as sensitive, and children’s eyes are especially vulnerable."The crystalline lens in children’s and teenagers’ eyes is more transparent than in adults, which makes them more susceptible to cornea and retina damage from the sun," says Corinne McCormack, spokesperson for The Vision Council and Fashion Director at FGX International, Inc. "Having your kids wear sunglasses while outdoors is actually as important as getting them to wear hats and sunscreen."The Vision Council just launched a Bureau of Missing Sunglasses initiative informing adults and children that "sunglasses are absolutely critical for keeping vision safe from UV damage," as stated in their 2012 report.So, what can you do to protect your young tike’s eyes?"If you’re concerned your little guy or gal won’t wear sunglasses, look for designs you know they love — like bright patterns, fun shapes or sunglasses with their favorite cartoon or movie character," adds McCormack. The following safety guidelines can also help:Seek shade for mid-day sun. UV rays are most powerful from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m., so avoid being in direct sunlight without access to shade, umbrellas or protective clothing.Wear protective apparel. A wide-brimmed hat and sunglasses are musts. Look for sunglasses with the ‘MaxBlock’ sticker, which indicates 100 percent UVA and UVB lens protection. The Foster Grant sunglass line (www.fostergrant.com) offers styles especially for kids as well as bands to keep them secure on small heads, and every pair has a MaxBlock seal.Set a good example. Your children will learn many habits from you, so reapply sunscreen often, and always remember to wear your sunglasses. Remind kids to pack their sunglasses and hats for vacation, and reward them for reapplying sunscreen. Don’t forget, sunglasses protect your eyes all year round.Failure to comply with eye safety may lead to long-term complications, including cataracts, retinal problems, macular degeneration, cancer and abnormal growths on the eye’s surface. Experts at the World Health Organization say ultraviolet (UV) damage is largely preventable. Encouraging good sun-exposure habits from childhood is a must.

See the Light: Protect Your Eyes From Summer Rays

Five words or less(NewsUSA) – As you slather on sunscreen to protect your skin this summer, don’t forget to protect your eyes. Unlike other parts of your body, your eye’s lens does not repair itself when damaged by the sun’s rays — eventually this can lead to permanent eye damage.
“While intense UV exposure can cause temporary ‘sunburn’ on the eye’s surface, an even graver concern is cumulative, long-term effects,” said Richard P. Mills, MD in Seattle, Wash. “UV-A and B rays actually penetrate the cornea and damage the lens and retina, leading to increased risk for cataract and macular degeneration, so protection and getting an eye exam are vitally important.”
EyeCare America, a public service program of the Foundation of the American Academy of Ophthalmology, provides eye exams and care at no out-of-pocket cost to people 65 and older. The eye exams are provided by a corps of nearly 7,000 volunteer ophthalmologists across the U.S. and in Puerto Rico. To see if you are eligible to receive a referral for an eye exam and care, visit www.eyecareamerica.org. This online referral center also enables friends and family members to find out instantly if their loved ones are eligible to be matched with one of EyeCare America’s volunteer ophthalmologists.
“I’m a low-income senior who needed an eye exam after many years of neglecting myself. Economically embarrassed, I was referred by EyeCare America, and received excellent, fast and courteous service,” said, Mr. Hansen, a recent EyeCare America patient. “I worked hard all my life and never dreamed I would be in a position of not being able to afford a simple exam.”
To protect your eyes this summer, EyeCare America offers the following advice:
When to wear sunglasses
Sunglasses should be worn anytime you are outdoors, particularly under these circumstances:
* During the summer, when the level of ultraviolet radiation (UVA and UVB) is at least three times higher than during the winter;
* When at the beach or in the water;
* When participating in winter sports, especially at high altitudes;
* When using medications that can cause photosensitivity.
Taking measures to protect your eyes from the sun, as well as getting eye conditions detected early through an eye exam, can help slow or prevent total vision loss from diseases such as macular degeneration and cataracts. But not everyone has insurance or can afford eye exams, so visit eyecareamerica.org to see if you are eligible for an eye exam and care at no out-of-pocket cost.

Prepare for Healthy Fun in the Sun

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<p>(<a href=NewsUSA) – Cold weather is in the rear-view mirror, and families across the country are gearing up to get active outdoors. With the threat of cabin fever waning, now is the time to get familiar with a few helpful tips to ensure a safe and stress-free season for the entire family:

* Avoid insect and tick bites. Bug bites can be dangerous, so take precautions, such as wearing insect repellent, tucking pants into socks or shoes when hiking in the woods and staying in the middle of trails to avoid overhanging branches. Avoid scented soaps and lotions that can attract bugs.

* Always wear sunblock. Limit exposure to the sun, especially between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m., when sun rays are at their strongest. Use sunblock that offers UVA and UVB protection with an SPF of 15 or higher. Apply sunblock 15 to 30 minutes before going out in the sun, and reapply it every two hours or after swimming, sweating or towel-drying.

* Avoid heat stress and heat stroke. It’s easy to get caught up in the fun of outdoor activities, but in extreme heat conditions it’s important to not push beyond your physical limits. Drink plenty of water to avoid dehydration and be on alert for symptoms of heat stress and heat stroke, such as thirst, cramps, fatigue, dizziness, nausea, vomiting and fever.

* Get your physical. If children are planning on participating in camp or sports over the summer, it’s important that they have a physical exam to ensure they’re physically ready to be active. Take Care Clinics, professional walk-in health care clinics located at select Walgreens across the country, are now offering sport and camp physicals for just $35 through September 2010.

A sports or camp physical is a perfect opportunity to interact with a trusted health care professional. Take Care Clinics are a convenient option for parents with busy schedules, as these clinics are open seven days a week and on weeknights, and don’t require appointments.

* Use your best judgment and take the appropriate precautions. If an accident does occur, seek treatment from a health care professional. Take Care Clinics can be a great resource for high-quality, affordable and convenient care for everyday illnesses, minor injuries like splinters, sprains and strains, and treatment for an expanding range of skin conditions including sunburn, tick and other insect bites, poison ivy, wart removal and more.

To find a clinic near you, visit TakeCareHealth.com or call

1-866-Take-Care (1-866-825-3227). High-school and middle-school level, pre-participation sports physicals are not available at Take Care Clinics in Kansas.