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How to Safely View the Eclipse

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Infographic: How to Safely View the Eclipse

Monday, April 8, 2024

A rare total solar eclipse will follow a narrow path across 14 U.S. states. All 48 contiguous states will see a partial eclipse.

What Is a Solar Eclipse?

A solar eclipse occurs when the moon blocks part or all of the sun.

Even though the sun will disappear during “totality” − the brief moment the moon completely blocks the sun − you should continue wearing eye protection.

Why is looking at the sun without protection dangerous?

An overload of solar radiation can damage photoreceptor cells in the eyes, sometimes permanently.

Eye Protection

Eclipse glasses are thousands of times darker than sunglasses to protect the eyes when used properly.

Beware of counterfeit and unsafe versions.

Safe glasses will be marked with ISO 12312-2 standard. Recommendations: myuh.care/eclipseglasses

Whether you’re wearing eclipse glasses or not, do NOT look at the sun through:

  • Cameras
  • Telescopes
  • Binoculars

The solar rays will cross the lens and cause serious eye injury. Digital devices, like smartphones, can also be damaged.

Eye Injury

Eye damage from the eclipse is unlikely to cause pain or discomfort because the retina lacks pain nerves. Symptoms can take up to 6-12 hours to appear.

Eye Injury Symptoms May Include:

  • headache
  • a blind spot in your vision
  • blurry vision
  • sensitivity to light or changes in color

Seek Help

If you suspect eye injury, see an eye care provider. Many people recover after 3-6 months, but some have permanent blind spots and distortion.

Related Links

For additional eclipse safety resources, visit science.nasa.gov/eclipses/safety.

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