By Linda Conlin, Pro to Pro Managing Editor


Image courtesy of ZEISS Vision Care

Merriam-Webster defines demonstration as “an act, process, or means of demonstrating to the intelligence; conclusive evidence: proof.” Even the most intractable skeptics can believe what they see. As eye care practitioners (ECPs), however, we spend a great deal of time talking to our patients about what they can’t see; in particular, UV light. When we talk about clear lenses that attenuate invisible UV radiation (UVR), it can sound counterintuitive.


Fortunately, most patients understand the reality of UV light, especially when it comes to using sunscreen. And many are coming to understand the impact of UVR on their eyes and vision. Still, our duty as patient educators faces another challenge. For years, patients have been told that their polycarbonate and photochromic lenses protect their eyes from UVR. We now know, however, that isn’t completely true. The current American National Standards Institute/International Organization for Standardization (ANSI/ISO) standard for a material to qualify for “100 percent UV protection” is attenuation up to 380nm. But, when you consider that UVR is light energy that ranges from 100 to 400nm on the electromagnetic (EM) spectrum, that 100% protection claim is misleading. Now ECPs must explain to patients the gap in the UV protection they thought they had. Certainly, it would be easier not just to tell, but to show and tell, when we explain invisible protection against invisible light.

Here’s where the ZEISS C-UVProtect™ device comes in. For the C-UVProtect™, ZEISS Vision partnered with Voxelight, LLC, maker of the Sunscreenr UV Camera, to develop a new hand-held tablet that incorporates unique AI facial analysis algorithms and a new indoor light technology to recognize whether a person’s eyeglasses are not adequately protecting their eyes and skin from UV. Using UV light and the special camera, this eight-inch tablet will identify lenses that provide UV protection up to 400nm, not just 380nm. While wearing glasses, patients look at themselves on the C-UVProtect™ screen. If their eyeglass lenses appear clear or slightly dark, UV protection is incomplete. Full UV protection is indicated only when the lenses appear as dark as sunglasses. What a unique way to engage with patients about UV protection for their eyes by showing them the gap in UV protection in their current lenses!

When patients understand that they are missing protection from 40 percent of solar UVR exposure on Earth's surface, the gap between 380nm and 400nm, they will want that protection. According to the ZEISS Research Consumer UV Study, released January 2019, “of over 2200 US consumers, 98% said they would be upset if their eye care providers did not offer them full UV protection. 84% would stop using their current eye doctor if they were not provided with lenses that offer full UV protection up to 400 nm.” Those results tell us that our patients want the best technology available for eye protection. With the C-UVProtect™, we can use technology to demonstrate to their intelligence that we offer the state-of-the-art technology they are looking for. Not only does ZEISS identify the need for expanded UV protection, they offer the solution. ZEISS lenses with UVProtect Technology move beyond today’s standards to a higher level of UV protection, which allows clear ZEISS lenses to block harmful UV rays up to 400 nm. This is the same standard of UV protection premium sunglasses provide.

According to Valentina Candeloro – Mood Media Marketing Director Mood International, in their 2019 Global Research Report, Elevating the Customer Experience – The Impact of Sensory Marketing, “The demands and preferences of consumers will drive the in-store experience to improve, delight, amaze and showcase the complete personality and essence of a brand. Sensorial marketing efforts drive elevated Customer Experiences. And elevated Customer Experiences drive success.” The C-UVProtect™ provides a sensory experience patients will remember, as it provides proof of what we tell them about UV protection with a WOW factor to amaze them. Seeing is believing.

You can demonstrate to your patients that you are at the forefront of UV protection technology by providing them with evidence they can see for themselves with the C-UVProtect™ available from ZEISS. You can also learn more about the device and the UVProtect technology in all ZEISS clear plastic lenses that blocks UV wavelengths up to UV400. Go to our free CE, Making the Invisible Visible, sponsored by ZEISS, at 2020mag.com/ce, and take advantage of our extended Summer CE Sale. All CE courses are Buy One, Get One Free when you enter the code CESummerSale at checkout.