Ask a Top Doctor: Do My Kids Need to Wear Sunglasses?

Answer from Robert Bailey, director of cataract and primary eye-care service at Wills Eye

“The greatest amount of UV damage to the eye happens in the first 18 years of life, so it’s even more vital for children to wear sunglasses than it is for adults. Give your child sunglasses as soon as he or she will keep them on, and you’ll help delay the onset of later-in-life eye problems like cataracts. Look for lenses that are shatter-resistant, that light can’t get into from any angle, and that block at least 99 percent of UVA and UVB rays — UVB is the most dangerous. Glasses without UV protection cause pupils to dilate, exposing them to greater harm.”

Have a question for a Top Doctor? E-mail jbergen@phillymag.com.

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