As summer arrives, it's time to visit Billson Opticians in Haverhill for those essential sunglasses!
2nd June 2015
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So summer is allegedly on its way.

This was not evident on a horrific two hour motorway journey in the blinding rain this morning, with visibility nil and heaters on full blast. And yet now, some three hours later, I’m watching children playing in the sunshine whilst their mothers enjoy an al fresco lunch.

Yes, we’re at that time of year where finding yourself appropriately dressed for the weather conditions is more about good luck than good management. And this same dilemma can be extended to eyewear, as every spectacle wearer knows.

To my knowledge, only Elton John is the proud possessor of glasses equipped with built in wipers and is therefore undeterred by the presence of large black clouds gathering whilst he’s out walking his dogs. Admittedly I don’t know if Elton John even has dogs, but I do, and many’s the time they have unwittingly adopted the role of guide dog as a sudden downpour leaves me bumbling along like Mr Magoo.

Fortunately, when it comes to the other side of the coin and the sunshine makes an unexpected dazzling appearance, I can reach into my bag and, admittedly after much fumbling about, pull out a pair of sunglasses custom made to both protect my eyes and retain the power of clear sight (after I’ve wiped off the fluff and the remains of a long lost fruit gum).

But prescription sunglasses are not only about maintaining your high fashion, drop-dead-gorgeous-even-on-the-school run image; they offer essential UV protection. When you buy prescription sunglasses, just as with non prescription shades, you have to be sure that the lenses block 100% of the sun’s harmful rays.

Don’t mistake UV protection with the colour density of your shades, as the tint and colour can be as light or dark as you wish whilst still giving full protection. And if you’re looking for additional glare protection, say for light bouncing back from snow or water, you can opt for prescription polarised sunglasses.

What about contacts?

Of course, if you wear contact lenses you might think it’s just fine to wear regular, and admittedly often cheaper, sunglasses.

Whilst this may be true in some circumstances (aforementioned school run) they’re not always a good solution for others. We all know that relaxing on the beach has its drawbacks… sand gets everywhere! And that includes in your eyes, particularly on a breezy day, and from personal experience I can tell you a scratched cornea will ruin your holiday quicker than a swarm of hungry mozzies eyeing you up for lunch.

Contacts on holiday

Even if you avoid the beach and opt for the pool, swimming in contacts is not a good idea. Swimming in contact lenses can result at best in irritation and/or eye infections. At worst it can lead to potential sight threatening conditions such as a corneal ulcer, due to the presence of viruses and microorganisms present in pretty much all open water. Your hotel pool may look crystal clear and get cleaned on a daily basis, but these nasties can be reintroduced as soon as the next person steps in the pool.

As mentioned, the tint on prescription sunglasses does not have to be exceptionally dark to give you the protection you need, so ditch the lenses during the daytime on holiday, and go for a lighter tint so you can still see when you go inside for lunch!

Or you might want to consider photochromic lenses as an option. Photochromic lenses adjust to changing light conditions by darkening in response to UV light and fading back to clear indoors.

These glasses provide the correct amount of protection for the varying light conditions throughout the day, offer 100% UV protection and are an ideal solution for people for whom it may be impractical to switch between different pairs of glasses throughout the day or carry the extra pair with them.

There are disadvantages however, in that they will almost always darken to degree when you step outside as UV rays are present even on a dull day, and they can take some time to return to clear from very dark once you return inside. Probably only a good look on a rock star…. and often not even then! Also they may not be suitable for driving as most car windscreens will block a significant amount of UV light, so unless they are a brand specifically designed for driving they may not darken well in a car.

Talking of driving perscription sunglasses can be an ideal solution to stop you squinting into the sun!  As with ordinary glasses, prescription sunglasses come in a wide variety of classic, high fashion and designer styles and are available for virtually any lens prescription from bifocal through to simple reading glasses.

Based in Haverhill, Billson Opticians take the same care and precision over your prescription sunglasses as they do over your regular spectacles. Offering a wide range of styles to suit all budgets, and a high level of expertise to ensure your sunglasses suit you and your lifestyle the dedicated team at Billson Opticians will guide you through all the options available to offer you the ideal solution at the right price.

Situated at 10 Queens Square, Haverhill, this family firm are committed to giving a personal service second to none, and offer their own guarantees on all their products, in addition to any manufacturers guarantee.

Why not call in to Billson Opticians this week for a chat and make sure you’re summer holiday ready?

Please click here for further information and full contact details for the Haverhill opticians.

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About the Author

Amelia C

Member since: 6th November 2012

I am a long-term resident of Haverhill and love sharing information and advice on the best places to visit, businesses to contact and people to speak to!

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