THE IMPORTANCE OF PROTECTING CHILDREN’S EYES
THE IMPORTANCE OF PROTECTING CHILDREN’S EYES
The eyes of children and adolescents are particularly sensitive to the harmful effects of ultraviolet radiation.
It is paramount to make parents aware of this danger and the importance of choosing quality sunglasses to protect the eyesight and well-being of their children. Luxottica Group has long been committed to this movement with the production of collections designed specifically for children and through research as well as information and prevention campaigns held at the Salmoiraghi&Viganò Research Centre.
All children love playing and being outdoors. The sunlight they are exposed to for many hours, above all during springtime and summertime daylight hours or while on vacation, has positive effects because it helps them develop a healthy body and is necessary for growing bones and fighting rickets. But the risks of overexposure are important and must not be underestimated by parents.
The use of sunblock and hats is very common. Instead, not everyone pays enough attention to another fundamental aspect for keeping kids healthy: protecting their eyes, which are particularly sensitive to light. This happens because their organisms are still developing: the ocular tissue allows a greater penetration of ultraviolet rays and the filtering capacity of the lenses that are inside the eye is much lower than that of adults.
Protecting children’s and adolescent’s eyes with a pair of quality sunglasses is therefore fundamental for their health, to prevent damage and diseases that can even appear at a much older age with cumulative and irreversible effects, year after year. Reliable studies have also demonstrated that, over the course of a person’s life, most UV ray exposure occurs before the age of 18 and most cataract problems result from damage that occurs before the age of 30.
But what should parents look for when choosing sunglasses for their youngsters? There are some characteristics that are important to bear in mind, because the glasses designed for a child are structurally different from the ones an adult would wear.
First of all, sunglasses must ensure protection under all circumstances. They can be coloured, have an original or amusing shape, or be fashionable, but the quality of the materials, frames, and lenses must be higher and guaranteed. It is therefore recommended that they be purchased from a reliable optician who is expert and competent, capable of helping select the best option.
The lenses must be shatterproof, preferably grey or brown, and filter 100% of all UVA-UVB-UVC rays, but not interfere with colour perception.
The frame must be sturdy, lightweight, and easy to handle, and made of non-allergenic material that will not deform in sunlight. There must not be any metal particles that might cause ocular trauma in case of breakage. The shape and size of the frame must cover the field of vision and guarantee that the eyesight always passes through the lens, especially for small children who often find themselves looking upward in the world.
The bridge must be lower for a better and more comfortable fit, to prevent the glasses from resting on the nose cartilage that is not yet fully formed; this helps ensure perfect centering. The length of the temples must be suitable to the face to prevent the glasses from slipping or pressing against the temples. Finally, the glasses must bear the CE mark to certify the quality of the product.
Sunglasses are also essential when practicing sports. In outdoor sports children should always wear sunglasses, even if the sky is cloudy. In addition to the characteristics listed above, the glasses must have a structure that protects against the wind to prevent lesions and irritations. Moreover, sunlight is particularly harmful amidst snow, at the sea, and in general near bodies of water (outdoor pools, rivers, lakes) due to the glare and reflections. In these cases, polarised sunglasses with 100% UV protection are always preferable.
It is important to make parents aware of the importance of protecting their children’s eyes, but also of the need to select quality eyewear. Luxottica Group has long been committed to this movement through research as well as information and prevention campaigns held at the Salmoiraghi&Viganò Research Centre and with the production of eyewear designed specifically for children through its proprietary brands.
The Ray-Ban Junior collection is just one example of this commitment: the iconic models of this brand have been studied to meet the specific needs of children. Innovation and high-quality materials, lenses, and technologies are combined with the timeless style of the Aviator. Catchy color contrasts light up the junior version of the New Wayfarer. Available with different types of lenses - classic, polarised, shaded, mirrored, and flash - Ray-Ban Junior eyewear ensures optimal vision and maximum protection in a unique, funny, and even cooler design.
Luxottica Group’s Oakley, one of the leading product design and sport performance eyewear brands, has recently launched its “Youth Collection”, dedicated to protecting the eyes of children and adolescents who are always on the go. The models are the same as the brand's most popular ones, but studied especially for youngsters to wear during sports and recreation.