Most of the glare that causes you to wear sunglasses comes from horizontal surfaces such as a highway or lake. When light strikes the surface, the reflected waves are polarized to match the angle of that surface. So, a highly reflective horizontal surface, such as a lake, snow, ice, or highway, will produce a lot of horizontally polarized light. Therefore, the polarized lenses in sunglasses are fixed at an angle that does not allow horizontal glare to pass through the lens. This greatly reduces the amount of glare in your vision.
Polarized lenses are great for everybody. It reduces the eye fatigue that leads to headaches and squinting by allowing the eye to relax and work easier.
Polarized lenses come in several colors, the most common being gray, green, and brown. Please note below the different advantages that these colors have depending on lifestyle.
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Gray - fishing, reading, gardening, motorcycling
Brown - bicycling, reading, fishing, golfing, hiking, motorcycling, driving
Green - hiking, shooting, fishing, motorcycling
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UV Rays and the Sun
Just as UV rays are damaging to our skin, they are also damaging to our eyes. UV rays, whether natural from the sun or artificial, can damage the eye's cornea, lens, and the eye surface tissues. UV radiation can also burn the front surface of the eye, just as skin gets a sunburn.
Exposure to UVA and UVB rays can have dangerous affects to the eyes and in turn, affect the vision. Short term effects include photokeratities (inflammation of the cornea), sunburn of the eye that includes pain, red eyes, a gritty feeling, extreme light sensitivity, and excessive tearing. Fortunately, the short term effects are temporary and rarely cause lasting damage to the eyes. Long term effects include the development of cataracts, damage to the retina, which is not reversible, and skin cancer of the eyelids. Long term exposure can also contribute to chronic eye disease.