Kids Health – 10 Reasons Children Should Wear Sunglasses


Children Should Wear Sunglasses

Caring for our children’s health and wellbeing is every parent or guardian’s main priority. From the moment they’re born we wash their clothes in non-bio washing powder to ensure their garments are gentle on their delicate skin. As they grow we feed them the most nutritious foods we can to help them grow strong and healthy.


When they learn to ride their scooter or bike we make sure they wear their helmets. And the same goes for football or rugby or whatever sport they find a passion for, because we’re there with mouthguards and head guards, shin guards and arm bands. All these actions come very naturally, as we do what we feel best to protect our children, like once upon a time we too were protected.


Further Reading: 6 Healthy Ways Keeping Pets Benefits Your Child


In winter we wrap them up in coats and wooly hats to protect them from the elements of wind and rain. And during summer months we ensure they’re protected from the sun with sun hats and caps, and lather them in sun lotion so their skin is protected from the sun’s rays. But did you know that just as you and I wear sunglasses to protect our eyes from the sun’s harmful UV rays, so too should your child?


Kids Health - 10 Reasons Children Should Wear Sunglasses - Girl on bike wearing sunglassesPhoto by Julio Andres Rosario Ortiz – CCO Licence


The Life of Stuff has teamed up with SmartBuyGlasses to bring you ‘Kids Health – 10 Reasons Children Should Wear Sunglasses


SmartBuyGlasses are one of the world’s biggest and fastest growing online glasses retailer. They sell hundreds of designer brands, alongside exclusive, sustainable, budget-friendly labels. And also specialise in sunglasses and kids glasses too. But not only are SmartBuyGlasses passionate about style, they also contribute to social causes like World Vision, 1% for the Planet and WWF conservation. You can find out more about their #SBCommunity initiatives here.


Further Reading: 4 Basic Hygiene Skills for Kids – How to Teach Them


Kids Health - 10 Reasons Children Should Wear Sunglasses - Boy wearing SunglassesPhoto by Shazaf Zafar – CCO Licence


10 Reasons Children Should Wear Sunglasses

According to the Healthy Ireland Summary Report of 2019 – ‘The Healthy Ireland Survey is an annual interviewer-administered face-to-face survey commissioned by the
Department of Health. It is part of the Healthy Ireland Framework to improve the health and wellbeing of people living in Ireland.’ assets.gov.ie

The most commonly used forms of sun protection are sunscreen of factor 30 or higher (68%), sunglasses (60%) and wearing a hat (42%).’

Healthy Ireland Summary Report 2019


Here are ten reasons why you and your children should wear sunglasses:

  1. Children need sunglasses because the lenses in their eyes transmit about 70% more UV than the adult eye. And since UV radiation that enters the eye can cause cell damage, this puts our little ones at a higher risk for future complications.

  2. Children are outdoors a lot more than adults, therefore it’s estimated that over half of their life exposure to the sun will occur within the first 20 years of their life! In fact optometrists.org state ‘Up to 80% of a person’s lifetime exposure to UV radiation is reached before age 18!’. And so with the dangers of more UV rays passing through their lenses, it’s quite obvious why children should wear sunglasses too.

  3. ‘Children’s eyelids and skin around the eye are delicate and more vulnerable than adult skin.’ mayoclinichealthsystem.org and so they need additional protection to keep their sensitive skin safe.

  4. There is also a short-term condition from sun exposure, that children can be susceptible to that causes inflammation and irritation around the eye, called keratitis. Similar to sunburn, the eye will be red and watery, and can have a gritty feel. Usually rectifying itself over time, in some cases eye drops or cream is required. But yet another reason why children should wear sunglasses for protection.

    Kids Health - 10 Reasons Children Should Wear Sunglasses - Girl on bike wearing sunglasses - Little boysPhoto by Andriyko Podilnyk – CCO Licence


  5. Damage from prolonged exposure to the sun’s ultraviolet rays can also cause children ‘to develop photokeratitis or “snow blindness.” This happens when the ultraviolet rays reflect off the sand and cause a temporary loss of vision.’ cpcmg.net

  6. According to The Association of Atromotists Ireland, AOI, there are three types of light produced by the sun with overexposure to these lights causing different types of damage to the eye, all of which you want to protect your children from and why children should wear sunglasses: 1. Invisible UV Light – can damage the front of the eye, the eye lids, the cornea and the lens. 2. Blue Light – thought to cause the eye to age prematurely, increasing the risks of vision problems later in life. 3. Intense Bright Light – can burn the retina, at the back of the eye.

  7. The Irish Cancer Society states that ‘skin cancer can take 10-15 years to develop and is the most common cancer in young people in Ireland aged 15 and 44 years of age.’ And so it’s obvious they recommend that children should wear sunglasses. In fact they recommend children wear wrap-around sunglasses that give UV protection as soon as they can.

  8. Hats only protect from above, and as children look up more they’re looking towards the sun more often. And as they aren’t protected from below where UV is reflected from water, sand or the pavement, they need additional protection to sun hats and caps.

  9. We teach our kids to look after their health from a young age by showing them how to wash their hands, how to cross the road, and so on. Teaching them to protect their skin and eyes by wearing sunscreen and sunglasses should also be just as important. Learning the reasons adults and children should wear sunglasses at an early age will result in them wearing them more often and become second nature, which has huge benefits for their life ahead.

  10. Quality sunglasses nowadays have the opportunity to be highly effective when it comes to eye protection and care. But they can also be trendy and cool. So whether your little one wants to look like you and get a kids version of your style of sunglasses or whether they want the complete opposite – there is no excuse why children shouldn’t wear sunglasses.

Feature photo by Evgeniia Go – CCO Licence


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Edwina O'Connor
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