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Staring at the sun for even a few seconds could cause damage, said Dr. Neil Bressler, a professor of ophthalmology at The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.

In this May 20, 2012, file photo, the annular solar eclipse is seen as the sun sets behind the Rocky Mountains from downtown Denver.

Other popular searches like "eyes hurt eclipse" and "eclipse hurt your eyes" make the motivation more obvious. Ultraviolet light is particularly harmful since it can cause damage to the structure of the eye. The fear was they did not meet protective standards. "This damage can be temporary or permanent and occurs with no pain". If you had 20/20 vision, Cioffi said, it could diminish to 20/40. "Maybe some people are thinking, 'I have these side effects but maybe they'll go away'". There is typically no immediate way to know if you've damaged your eyes because the retina has no pain receptors. For Tomososki, his "good eye" compensates for his "bad" one when both are open.

If any of the above occur, mark the location on the grid and bring it in to your next optometrist appointment.

Mugavin added he expected even more cases following this year's big solar event.

There's not a specific treatment for solar retinopathy, but recovery can happen with time.

If the pain is severe, some doctors are able to give you medication to help ease the discomfort as the eyes begin to heal. It can take months, but the retina can largely heal itself if the damage is not severe. But because retinas can't heal themselves, it's possible staring at the sun too long could have caused permanent damage.

"I would tell you people still do that especially younger children", Dr. Albert Pang told Newsfix. The other half will experience around 99 percent sun coverage. For people who made a decision to look directly at the eclipse, such as Trump, it can take a few hours or even a few days to realize the damage that has been caused. "He was looking up through the trees while he was working, but he must have been looking at the sun more than he realized, unfortunately". "Essentially there's a lens inside your eye that focuses the light very similar to that magnifying glass and what it can do is physically burn the retina".


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