Last month, we shared the story of CNN news anchor Anderson Cooper‘s frightening experience with sunburned eyes. Since his case was first reported, there’s been a lot of discussion about sunburned eyes and about eye damage in general.
Dr. Deborah Sarnoff, Senior Vice President of The Skin Cancer Foundation and a practicing dermatologist in New York, shared with Time Health & Family that sunburns to the extent Cooper experienced aren’t very common, but that they are possible when the eyes are left unprotected. This is because the outer layer of the eye – the cornea – is quite similar to the outer layer of the skin. When it receives too much sun exposure, the cornea can become inflamed and possibly lead to other issues like temporary blindness.
Similar to sunburned skin, sunburned eyes can cause permanent damage, too. Dr. Sarnoff explained that while the inflammation will eventually go away, there is also a risk of chronic damage. Issues like cataracts, skin cancer of the eyelids, and melanoma in the retina are all risks associated with sun-damaged eyes.
Dr. Sarnoff shared “We have sunscreen we can put on our skin, but we don’t have eye drops that offer a protective film for the cornea, so it is really important that everyone, and especially people with fair or light eyes wear sunglasses that protect against both UVA and UVB rays.”
Since sun damage can accumulate over time, it is important to start protecting your eyes from day one. Real Kids Shades offers protective sunglasses for infants and children through age 12. Our shades are designed to fit kids comfortably while providing 100% protection from UVA and UVB rays. Visit our website to check out our cute and cool sunglasses for kids. You can make a purchase there, or search for a retailer near you.
Don’t wait until it is too late! Start protecting your kids’ eyes from sun damage now!