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Glare and Driving Safety

In Canada, there are over 190,000 car accidents each year. More than 90% of road crashes are a result of human error or condition. It is up to each one of us to mitigate the risks on the road and drive as safely as possible, and good vision is vital for your safety and comfort while driving.

Sunglasses are a crucial tool for driving safely in bright sunlight and glare conditions. Driving in these conditions without proper sunglasses results in squinting and eye fatigue, making it harder for drivers to look around and gather information on what is going on around their vehicle. Glare from direct sunlight and glare off horizontal surfaces can be debilitating and cause us to miss objects on the road or make driving errors.

There is a simple way to protect your eyes and optimize visual function while driving in daytime conditions and that is to wear a quality pair of sunglasses. A high-quality sunglass lens protects from bright sunlight and glare, minimizes distortion and provide excellent image quality.

Polarized lenses reduce problematic glare from horizontal surfaces and lessen the intensity of the brightest objects in your field of vision. Additional lens treatments like anti-reflective coatings can further reduce glare, make the lens clearer to look through, and reduce reflections off the windshield, car headlights, and other surfaces.

The right set of sunglasses can immediately help you feel more at ease behind the wheel for daytime driving and get you safely to your destination – all with no squinting. Your eyes will feel better and less fatigued when it comes to enjoying evening activities.

When it comes to night driving, it is important to reduce the glare from headlights and improve our ability to adapt from light to dark and back again. Our comfort with night driving tends to decline as we age, and this is due to several factors. We can optimize our night vision for driving by wearing glasses or contact lenses with our most up-to-date prescription. Uncorrected astigmatism or other blur will cause haloes and star-bursting from headlights.

To optimize comfort and performance driving at night, there are lens options which are engineered to reduce the glare from headlights and otherwise brighten our vision for night driving. Zeiss DriveSafe lenses have this technology and get rave reviews for their performance while driving in both day and nighttime conditions.

See your Doctor of Optometry to assess your vision and make expert recommendations on lens options for the most clear and comfortable driving experience!

Dr. Lisa Scharf, Optometrist