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Do Your Eyes Hurt After Watching The Eclipse? Check These Signs Of Damage

eclipse eye

Did you look at the solar eclipse without approved eyewear? If so, you may be one of the millions who have been googling “Why do my eyes hurt?”

We have good news for you—you’re probably just fine. If you think you’re experiencing eye pain, it’s likely your anxiety is lying to you. According to USA Today, the damage would have been done to your eyeball, which doesn’t have nerve endings. So the pain you’re feeling is not proof of long-term damage.

More good news is that even if you are suffering from other symptoms such as pain around the eye, headaches, or blurry vision, they will probably go away within a few days or weeks. After the 2017 solar eclipse, there were only about 100 documented cases of true eye damage, reports NPR, and millions were looking at the sun.

The most worrisome condition caused by gazing at an eclipse is solar retinopathy, which is when the light damages your retina.

“Exposure of the retina to intense visible light causes damage to its light-sensitive rod and cone cells,” Dr. Ralph Chou at the University of Waterloo in Canada wrote. “The light triggers a series of complex chemical reactions within the cells which damages their ability to respond to a visual stimulus, and in extreme cases, can destroy them.”

People suffering from the condition wouldn’t experience immediate symptoms either. It could take up to 12 hours to notice issues or discomfort.

Symptoms Of Solar Retinopathy

The American Academy of Ophthalmology says these are the main symptoms of solar retinopathy:

  • Blurry vision
  • Headache
  • A blind spot in your central vision in one or both eyes
  • Increased light sensitivity
  • Distorted vision—for example, a straight line may appear bent.
  • Dyschromatopsia (changes in how you perceive color)

If you’re experiencing any of these symptoms, visit an ophthalmologist for diagnosis or treatment.

You can find the source of this story’s featured image here.

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