Many of us look forward to a sunny day, but others dread it because exposure to bright sunlight causes them discomfort or pain. Why? Because their eyes are hyper-sensitive to glare, which is termed photophobia.
Different people's experience with photophobia varies considerably in their level of sensitivity and the type of light that they find uncomfortable.
It can be very debilitating if you suffer from photophobia, because it may severely interfere with your ability to work in an office, enjoy the outdoors, or read from a computer screen.
For some people cutting down on the light level entering the eye helps; for others, cutting out certain ranges of specific colours of light is more beneficial.
If you are very sensitive to the sun's glare, it is tempting to wear dark sunglasses even indoors. However, this is not recommended as it can make your eyes even more light sensitive when you go outdoors again and face the full extent of the sun's glare.
Photophobia isn't a condition - it's a symptom of another problem. Research has shown that Dry Eye Syndrome is the commonest eye-related cause of photophobia, while migraine is the most common neurological cause.
Other common medical factors underlying photophobia include cataracts and macular degeneration.
7eye AirShield sunglasses fitted with extra dark grey lenses can provide optimum glare protection outdoors
The design of the 7eye AirShield range of sunglasses with their protective eye cup or gasket fitted behind the rims is highly effective for blocking peripheral glare - far more so than standard designs of wraparound sunglasses.
7eye AirShield glasses are also much more stylish than the industry standard wraparound fit-over glasses that have long been the standard form of eyewear available to photophobia sufferers.
Eyewear Accessories can recommend three alternative lens options that will be of interest if you are highly sensitive to the sun's glare:
- Polarised Grey lenses
- Extra Dark Grey lenses
- DarkShift Photochromic Grey lenses
You won't find 7eye AirShield sunglasses with this choice of especially dark lenses in Specsavers, Boots or even at RNIB.
Eyewear Accessories is able to offer genuine high performance 7eye SharpView lenses that are designed specifically for people who suffer from photophobia outdoors in the bright sunshine.
SharpView Polarised Grey
- Light transmission: 12%, Polarised
- Category 3
- 100% UV protection.
- A dark grey, neutral tint with the added benefit of a polarising filter that reduces the sun's glare, especially at low angles and when reflected from shiny or light surfaces
- Choose this lens if you have an eye condition such as dry eye syndrome that has increased your sensitivity to bright sunshine
Extra Dark Grey lenses
- Light transmission: 7%, Non-Polarised
- Category 4
- 100% UV protection.
- A fixed extra dark grey tint
- Not for driving - we will require you to sign a waiver that you will not use them for this purpose
- Choose this lens if you are extremely sensitive to sunlight - even on days where the sun is hazy
DarkShift Photochromic lenses
- Light-activated lens that responds to UV light
- Variable tint from virtually clear indoors to 9% light transmission in full sun (in temperatures below 5°C it darkens to just 4%)
- 100% UV protection
- Not for driving
- Choose this lens if you have an eye condition such as dry eye syndrome that has increased your sensitivity to bright sunshine and you are looking for a darker light-reactive lens than the photochromic eclypse
If you need prescription lenses or specialised lenses
If you need prescription lenses or custom-made lenses in a specific tint suitable for your photophobia, you should contact your optician or chosen optical reglazing company before buying the glasses from us.
You need to check that the lenses you require (and your prescription) can be accommodated into the glasses you want.
Always get advice from your ophthalmologist first on which lenses will be help your condition.
For more guidelines, see Getting prescription lenses fitted
Which 7eye AirShield glasses are currently available with dark lenses?
Currently we are stocking dark lenses for the Chubasco, Churada, Briza, Ventus, Cape and Panhead:
7eye Chubasco (small)
7eye Churada (small to medium)
7eye Ventus (small to medium)
7eye Cape (medium)
7eye Panhead (medium to large)
Which Ziena glasses are currently available with dark lenses?
Currently we are stocking these lens options for the Ziena Kai and Marina:
Need some advice?
If you are interested in our photophobia glasses but are not sure how best to proceed, please contact us at Eyewear Accessories and we will be pleased to help you.