Eye care tips for skiers

Posted on 2016/02/16 at 12:34 pm by LASIK MD

While some people head indoors when frigid winds come around, others wait all year for snow to fall. For winter sports enthusiasts, dropping temperatures are a sure sign it’s time to prepare for a season of cold weather adventures.

Skiing is among the most popular outdoor winter activities. This sport is great for all ages and skill levels, making it a wonderful choice for families and groups of friends looking to be active together. However, it can present some challenges to people with ocular issues.

Why goggles matter
Goggles are an essential accessory for skiers, as they offer protection from debris, cold air and blinding rays. They also shield the upper half of the face from these elements. Because goggles are such crucial components of successfully hitting the slopes, you should be especially careful when choosing the right pair.

All About Vision explained that goggles are crafted to withstand wear and tear. They’re often made from nylon and rubber, which are durable materials that mould easily to the face. Unlike standard sunglasses, ski goggles usually have side shields that offer complete protection for the eyes. Goggles are typically sold in a wrap-around style so that they don’t fall off.

Selecting the right lens for your eyes
When it comes to choosing the correct lenses for your goggles, there are a few key factors to consider. First, think about where you plan to ski, and what the light conditions are like in this location.

According to Skis.com, polarized lenses are good for reducing glare, but if you plan to ski in low light they won’t suffice. Similarly, mirrored lenses are effective at blocking light on bright days, but may cause reduced visibility if you’re skiing at night or when the sky is overcast. Non-mirrored lenses are ideal for skiing in darker conditions, but they may allow too much light in during bright, sunny days. If you plan to hit the slopes during different times and at various weather conditions, you should consider photocromatic lenses, as they adjust to different levels of light.

You should also be vigilant about choosing a pair of goggles with the correct level of ventilation. Goggles with low-minimal ventilation only prevent fogging when you’re being active, while those with medium ventilation can prevent condensation from accumulating when you’re skiing at a low to moderate pace. High ventilation goggles are able to stay fog-free even when you’re standing still.

People who require eye prescriptions have a few options when it comes to selecting goggles. Those who wear contact lenses typically sport them in addition to standard goggles. Those who wear eyeglasses and are set on keeping their frames on during ski excursions can purchase over-the-glasses goggles. These models are much larger, so they fit snuggly over your eyeglasses. Skiers with eye prescriptions also get custom-made lens inserts for their goggles. This means they don’t need to wear their glasses or contacts, but are still able to see clearly.

Of course, opting to undergo a LASIK procedure will eliminate your need for managing glasses or contacts in addition to your goggles.

Remember to protect your eyes from the sun 
Neglecting your eyes’ safety while skiing can have severe consequences. It’s especially important to practice proper sun safety, as the glare of light on snow can be very intense. Rebuild Your Vision noted that skiers who don’t equip themselves with strong enough goggles often experience photokeratitis, or “snow blindness,” which is essentially a sunburn on the eye surface. Exposing the sensitive tissue of your eyes to harsh UV rays can have serious long-term effects, so always keep your eyes in mind when hitting the slopes.

Don’t let visual problems keep you off the slopes. Use these tips to pick out the perfect pair of goggles.

Do you have a question about LASIK? Ask one of our experts!

Also available in/Également disponible en : French

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