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A few months ago I was out walking with my family and overheard a boy saying to his mother “mum the sun hurts my eyes. Can I have sunglasses?” His mother replied “Kids don’t need sunglasses.”

I notice that she was wearing sunglasses and that her son was squinting. When I looked around I notice that very few other children were wearing sunglasses. While I saw more girls than boys wearing them, many looked more like a ‘fashion accessory’ than for sun protection.

Our son has been wearing sunglasses from the time he was a tiny baby. I simply thought that his eyes would be even more sensitive to the sun than mine, I saw many babies squinting and shutting their eyes when exposed to direct sunlight and there were baby sunglasses at optometrist so I bought them.

I was only assuming the importance of sunglasses for children and I thought it was time to seek the advice of an expert! So, I decided to investigate further and interviewed optometrist Dr Katrina Chim from Proview Optical in Chatswood, NSW.

Dr Katrina confirmed that all children need to wear UV protective sunglasses as UV rays can cause short-term and long term damage to children’s eyes. Watch the short video below for expert advice on good eye health for children in the age range of toddlers to teenagers.

In this interview you’ll find out:

  1. Why your child (baby too) needs to wear UV protective sunglasses that meet Australian standards as part of good eye health.
  2. How UV rays can hurt your child’s eyes both in the short term and long term.
  3. Why children who don’t protect their eyes are more prone to age related eye diseases.
  4. Choosing the best sunglasses.
  5. Why sunglasses are just one part of overall sun protection for your children.

This is such an important interview, for your child’s long-term eye health, please find a few minutes to watch.

Dr Kim also suggests that you use UV protective sunglasses that meet the Australian Standards in combination with other UV protection measures for your kids such as:

  • Remaining in the shade
  • Wearing a hat
  • Applying Sunscreen

Remember slip on a shirt, slap on a hat, slop on some sunscreen and slide on some sunglasses and you’ll keep your kids safe in the sun!

  • my children have always worn sunglasses from a young age…it is very important


    • yeah for sure, hopefully they keep them on

    Reply

  • So glad my daughter loves wearing her sunnies, I think it’s important that we look after our children’s health :)

    Reply

  • DEFINITELY a great point! Kids DO need sunglasses (plus usually mine don’t have a problem with it because they want to look “cool”

    Reply

  • I wore sunnies when I was a child and I never leave home without mine now because If I don’t wear them I get an instant headache from the sunlight. My 6 month daughter squints a lot when we’re in the sun and becomes restless, so I bought her a pair of sunnies and now she loves being outside and I also have that great feeling us mums get when we know our kids are safe and that they won’t develop problems when they get older.

    Reply

  • Thanks for sharing and tips. My children love wearing their ‘sunnies’ out and about. They have a few pairs – different styles and colours


    • Thanks for taking the time to comment and for making sure your little ones protect their eyes!

    Reply

  • I am glad i saw this article and although our girl has 4 pairs of sunnies she rarely wears them as she always takes them off and gives them to her dad or leaves them in the car


    • Slowly, slowly I helped my son get used to sun glasses… now he is rarely without them. We have a pair in the car and one in my hand bag next to mine… so we are covered wherever we are.

    Reply

  • Thanks again for sharing this article; I noticed a family out the other day with the adults wearing hats and glasses and the kids without hats and glasses. It was incredibly hot!


    • I know… sometimes parents don’t see they have hats so their kids should have hats. I saw that a lot when I was in the US as they don’t have the slip, slop, slap and slide culture sun awareness we have … thanks for sharing

    Reply

  • Sunglasses are something I forget to put on my children. I must buy them another pair.


    • Yes, in the early days it is so easy to forget – but once you get into the habit or hats and sunglasses … its easy!

    Reply

  • Sunglasses for children is a good idea ,sunlight is strong .We get our boy pairs ,but cheeky boy pops lenses out ! Good article.


    • Oh no… popped out lenses is no fun for mum… have to give him something new to pop out so he leaves his glasses alone!

    Reply

  • Wow i never thought about my kids wearing sunnies
    Will be looking into getting them sunglasses very soon


    • I know! There is lots to think of when it comes to taking care of kids… great to have the mouths of mums forum for support!

    Reply

  • Thanks for sharing this important information and raising awareness. Some of my favourite photos are of the kids with big floppy hats and sunglasses, just so cute!

    Reply

  • i have bought sunglasses for my children and they actually love to wear them. i have to say that it sure is worth it. make sure that it has the uv protection sticker and not just coloured lenses


    • You make a great point… the sunglasses need to protect from UV rays … not just be a fashion accessory … cancer council has a good range for kids

    Reply

  • I can remember when we were young we had sunglasses.


    • I remember dress up sun glasses but we didn’t have UV protective ones… glad some parents were in the know about eye protection. We even baked ourselves with oil on our skin in the sun – thinking that was a good thing… lucky we know better now!

    Reply

  • Sunglasses didn’t used to used widely for children. I can remember being told by an eye specialisr when I was young that I had scarring on my eyes which would have been caused by not wearing sunglasses as a child.
    My little great nephew started taking his Dad’s sunglasses off when they went inside and putting them on himself. Dad had to get them back to wear when he left to go to work. In the beginning he put them on upside down but at least he was getting the concept of wearing them. He now has his own and puts them on properly. Typical toddler he hates having a hat on. That is a battle at the moment.


    • I know – we didn’t have sunglasses growing up either … or a hat as far as I can remember and we spent hours and hours in the sun everyday. Great story re your little nephew… thanks for taking the time to comment

    Reply

  • My kids have always had sunnies.

    Reply

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