Eclipse poses dangers to the eyes

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But according to Dr.Raymond J. Clifford, an ophthalmologist at Peninsula Eye Center in Salisbury, looking at Monday's eclipse won't make you uncomfortable, and that's where the danger lies.

Van Gelder said it's safe to look directly at the sun only if you're in the area of totality - that 70-mile swath that will be plunged into darkness on Monday - and only for the duration of totality (a bit more than two minutes, depending on the location).

The way it works is, the rays can burn the retina of your eye and if you allow this to happen, this is what you can expect. He noted that ever since he got it, the blind spot hasn't gotten any better or any worse.

What Tomososki experienced is called solar retinopathy - damage caused to the retina from looking at the sun.

The good new is, the certified eclipse glasses are fairly cheap.


According to Inside Edition, Tomososki was unable to see past the second line of the eye chart.

"That's all it took", Tomososki told KPTV.

"I'm glad I didn't go 40 seconds", he told Fox 12 Oregon.

"The sun at that time, at 3:30 p.m., was in the one o'clock position", said Tomososki. "But, even though it's not painful, those harmful rays are still getting in your eyes and focused right onto the center of your retina, and that's where it does the damage".

People with solar retinopathy show a very characteristic pattern of eye damage during an exam.


Tomososki said that he wished he knew more about the risks of looking at the sun during an eclipse that day, and he hopes that others will heed his warning to wear eye protection during the upcoming eclipse. "Unfortunately there's not a treatment for it, so once that damage is done you have to wait and hopefully things improve and your body can heal some, but a lot of the damage can be permanent". His friend suffered damage in the left eye.

"We both got burned at the same time", Tomososki told TODAY.

Keep in mind that plenty of fake vendors are selling solar eclipse glasses claiming they'll protect your eyes. But the second the sun comes out "the eclipse glasses have to go back on".

"When the disc of the moon has completely blocked out the sun and the corona of the sun is visible, it is safe to look at the corona", Van Gelder said.

Tomososki's goal is to prevent other people from making the same mistake he did with the eclipse coming on August 21.


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