UV Blocking, Vitamin-Infused Contact Lenses May Prevent AMD

UV Blocking, Vitamin-Infused Contact Lenses May Prevent AMD

Regardless of an incurable diagnosis, research to combat age-relate macular degeneration (AMD) continues. This disease persists in robbing millions per year of their sight and livelihood with many medical professionals considering AMD a near epidemic concern.

According to the National Eye Institute (NEI) Age-Related Eye Disease Study,

“Presently, treatment for advanced AMD is very limited, and until now there has been no treatment to slow the progression of intermediate AMD. As the average lifespan of our population increases, the number of people who develop AMD will increase dramatically in the years ahead. Unless successful means of prevention or treatment are developed, blindness from advanced AMD—and its importance as a public health problem—will increase.”

Optical research shows the beneficial results of current, cutting edge preventative technology recently developed for market. Until now, nobody had developed a formula to reduce exposure to ultra-violet (UV) light combined with the antioxidant properties of specific vitamins

Now, UV blocking vitamin-infused contact lenses prevent AMD and may even slow its progress for those already afflicted. It is a design that some believe to be a highly beneficial choice in the field of defensive optic tools.

Potential of UV Damage

UV light has been studied and confirmed to be a danger to human vision and possibly an accelerant of AMD. The American Macular Degeneration Foundation (AMDF) states,

“Harmful effects of ultra-violet and blue light ultra-violet light is that portion of the spectrum of invisible light below 286nm to 400nm, and is generally understood to be harmful to the eye, possibly leading to cataracts and other eye diseases such as age-related macular degeneration (AMD).”

Protecting your eyes from UV light requires sunglasses. These offer sufficient protection which consists of covering the entire eye (including wrapping around the sides) and labeled UV 400 (UV absorbent is not acceptable). However, there are many sources of UV rays in addition to the sun such as:

  • Welder’s flash
  • Video display terminals
  • Fluorescent lighting
  • High intensity mercury vapor lamps (for night sports and high-crime areas)
  • Xenon arc lamps (automotive headlights, camera flashes)

UV Blocking Contact Lenses May Reduce Solar Reflections 

Solar UV light reflections are a consideration that you may not realize could be affecting your vision.

The following chart was compiled by author David H. Sliney with the Laser-Microwave Division, U.S. Army Environmental Hygiene Agency, Edgewood Arsenal, Maryland.

From the study titled ‘Physical factors in cataractogenesis: ambient ultraviolet radiation and temperature’ published in Investigative Ophthalmology and Visual Science, this chart ‘How Surfaces Reflect UV Radiation’ is a small example of the amount of UV light you may be exposed to daily.

“Ground resistance is the most critical determinant of ocular exposure to UVB radiation. Here are UVB reflective percentages for horizontal surfaces at “high noon” on a sunny day.”

  • Fresh snow 88%
  • Dirty snow 59%
  • Sea foam (surf) 25%-30%
  • House paint (white, metal oxide) 22%
  • Dry sand 15%-18%
  • Concrete pavement 8%-12%
  • Wet sand 7%
  • Black asphalt 4%-9%
  • Soil 4%-6%
  • Lawn grass (winter) 3%-5%
  • Lawn grass (summer) 2%-5%

Developing contact lenses capable of protecting against these unexpected solar UV light reflections when sunglasses may not be in use could be one a consideration in preventing AMD.

UV Blocking Contact Lens Study

The initial research of UV blocking contact lenses emerged in 2012 as presented at the British Contact Lens Association Clinical Conference. Study lead-author Professor James Wolffsohn, Deputy Executive Dean for Life and Health Sciences at Aston University in Birmingham commented,

“Researchers have speculated that chronic UV light exposure may contribute to aging processes in the eye, This preliminary data suggests that wearing UV-blocking contact lenses could play a contributory role in maintaining the eye’s macular pigment density which, in turn, may play a role in helping to delay the development of macular degeneration.”

Johnson & Johnson Medical, The Vision Care Institute cites these study based facts in a key points report,

  • A large body of evidence supports the benefit of wearing UV-blocking contact lenses to prevent detrimental ocular damage associated with UV exposure.
  • When UV-blocking contact lenses are worn the peripheral light focussing effect is significantly reduced, suggesting that the risk of eye diseases such as pterygium and cortical cataracts may be reduced.
  • Contact lenses that offer UV protection are labelled as Class I or Class II. Class I offers the highest level of protection, blocking more than 90% UVA and 99% UVB, and is currently found in five silicone hydrogels,

Add Some Vitamins

As the alternative aka traditional medicine field advances, more applications in place of synthetic strongholds are being considered by not only consumers but scientific research as well. Vitamins have had a roller coaster of studies as well as positive and negative media coverage. Overall, vitamins, herbs and more that target specific ailments have shown promise.

For instance, two studies cite vitamin C and vitamin D to reduce illness such as the common cold.

Harvard Health reports that,

“…taking at least 200 mg of vitamin C per day did appear to reduce the duration of cold symptoms…”

The UK Independent cited a study in the British Medical Journal,

“…the researchers found that vitamin D supplementation cut the proportion of participants experiencing at least one acute respiratory tract infection by 12%”

Therefore, it only made sense when a small company decided to invent vitamin-enhanced contact lenses

According to a report by the UK Mirror,

“The individual lenses are stored in a pink saline liquid, which contains vitamins E, B6 and B12 – all of which will supposedly help alleviate swelling, discomfort and eye muscle fatigue. The lenses also allow more oxygen to reach the eyes, which makes them less likely to feel sore by the end of the day, and means you might not have to rely on eye drops.”

The manufacturer of the vitamin infused contact lenses is stated by the Mirror as alleging,

“the vitamin benefits are enough to make a big difference to contact wearers, the brand has also designed them to help prevent users from developing conditions like cataracts, glaucoma and macular degeneration (age-related burring or no vision).”

The combination of UV blocking, vitamin-infused contact lenses is the next phase of using exterior tools to combat macular degeneration and other eye diseases. It is the development of these and many other tools which are rapidly becoming essential in preventative and maintenance programs for vision and overall systemic health.