Thursday, June 21, 2012

What Makes a ‘Good Pair’ of Sunglasses?

It doesn’t matter if you’re playing on the playground with your kids, sitting in a boat in Lake St. Clair or just relaxing in the backyard, it’s crucial that you have the necessary protection for your eyes. The primary tool for this would be a good pair of sunglasses.

But what exactly makes a “good pair” of sunglasses? First and foremost, check if your sunglasses protect against ultraviolet radiation. If they don’t, you might as well be wearing regular eyeglasses, because while they might make the light less intense, you’re not doing anything for your retinas. But that’s not always enough. While UV protection is absolutely essential for protecting your eyes, you need to make sure they protect against UV-A and UV-B, the two different kinds of ultraviolet light. For obvious reasons, it’s essential that your eyes have the maximum amount of protection.

Speaking of maximum protection, did you know that light doesn’t enter the eye from just one location; it hits our eyes from all different directions. It will bounce of walls, snow, water, concrete, etc. That’s why UV protection isn’t the only thing you should look for in your shades, you should also look for them to be polarized as well. Polarization, or anti-glare, helps protect you from light that bounces into your eyes from different angles.

And while the necessity of polarized lenses should not be understated, lens color is also very important. As you’ve probably noticed, most lenses are some variety of gray, this is because gray is not only a neutral color, but also doesn’t distort the colors of the world around you. Gray is also the color that reduces the intensity of light better than any others.

And finally, make sure your sunglasses are comfortable, look good and fit well. We all know that you won’t wear a pair of ugly, uncomfortable sunglasses, no matter how well they protect your eyes. If you need help finding the perfect pair of shades, don’t hesitate to give me a call at 313-278-SEEN or contact me.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Baseem Wahab and SEEN Vision’s Tips for Summer Eye Care

If you thought we had a strange winter, the summer is definitely shaping up to defy logic, too. I’ve had a number of patients coming in lately for their eye exams and asking questions about eye protection for the coming months. This seems to be a subject of great interest, so I thought I’d share a few thoughts on it with all of you.

Substance Over Style
We enjoy looking good when we’re out and about, right? After all, who wouldn’t want the latest 2012 Ray-Ban, Prada or Serengeti sunglasses? And even though Billy Crystal once joked that “It’s better to look good than to feel good,” you absolutely need to make sure that whatever glasses you choose, they block 100 percent of UVB and UVA rays. Ultra violet rays don’t care about fashion, so that should be secondary to you, too. Let’s find you the right protection first, then we’ll worry about style.

Children Need Sunglasses
Have you ever gone out on an overcast day without suntan lotion and discovered you still wound up sunburned? Did you realize your eyes can get sunburned, too? Kids won’t think twice about leaving their sunglasses home on an overcast day when it’s time to play outside, so we need to remind them. Remember, UV is radiation, not sunlight. It doesn’t have to be bright out to damage your eyes.

But I Wear Contacts…
It doesn’t matter. Wear sunglasses even if you wear contacts. It’s true that some contacts offer UV protection, but they’re only covering part of your eye. What about the rest? All the areas surrounding where contact protection ends are exposed.

Okay, We’ll Say It Again
I once knew a college professor who mentioned that most of us think we’ll live forever here on earth. None of us have ever been able to pull that one off yet, but we continue believing it anyway. Still, the way to help prevent eye problems from getting the better of us as we do age is to keep up with regular eye exams. Having healthy eyes will not only help you feel good, but then we can help you look good, too. Take that, Billy Crystal!

If you have questions about sunglasses, UV protection or would like to set up an appointment, please contact us through our site or give us a call at 313-278-SEEN. Both myself and the staff here at SEEN Vision are here to help.

Dr. Baseem Wahab, Optometrist and owner of SEEN Vision Care in Metro Detroit’s Dearborn area, is also the president of Mobile Eye Care. He can also be found sharing his expertise with Eyes on You Image and Practice Consultants.