in ,

Solar Eclipse Leads to Surge in Eye Injuries, Prompting Google Searches for ‘Hurt Eyes’

Source: Copyright Missouri State University

Right after Monday’s much-anticipated solar eclipse, the total number of people searching Google for “hurt eyes” has gone up significantly. A New York City doctor has reported an increase in the number of patients coming to him due to eye pain.

People Are Panicking

Dr. Janette Nesheiwat, a New York City-based double board-certified doctor told Fox News Digital, “I had several patients come in panicking saying ‘I don’t want to go blind.’”

Source: Pexels

Dr. Nesheiwat added, “I couldn’t believe it, people actually looked at the eclipse without protection.”

People Had Been Cautioned In Advance

In the days leading up to the eclipse, eue specialists and Doctors had been constantly cautioning the public against looking directly at the sun, but it seems like some did not heed the advice.

Source: Pexels

Staring at the sun without proper protective gear like special solar eclipse glasses can cause harm to vision which may result in serious and permanent damage. Nesheiwat explains that the sun’s rays can burn the retina and cause damage to the macula, which is the portion of the retina responsible for central vision.

Google Searches For “Hurt Eyes”

People have reportedly been searching “hurt eyes” and “why do my eyes hurt after the eclipse” on Google after the eclipse.

Source: Pexels

A CDC spokesperson informed Fox News Digital that the National Center for Health Statistics currently does not have any substantial national level data regarding eye damage following Monday’s eclipse.

Nesheiwat Has Treated Around Eight Patients So Far

Nesheiwat stated that she has treated around eight patients so far at the City MD clinic near Madison Square Garden in Midtown Manhattan.

Source: Pixabay/DarkoStojanovic

One of the patients Nesheiwat treated had reportedly looked at the sun either directly or through their phone for almost 10 minutes.

Damage Can Be Irreversible In Some Cases

Nesheiwat explained, “The damage can be irreversible if the retina is severely damaged by looking directly at the without proper eye protection.”

Source: Pexels/Oleksandr P

Nesheiwat added, “Some people may have mild symptoms if the exposure to the sun was brief.”

Symptoms Being Reported

Talking about the most common symptoms people have reported so far, Nesheiwat shared, “Symptoms my patients suffered included headaches, blurry vision, and nausea while one of my patients said he was seeing spots. Other symptoms can include a change in color vision.”

Source: Pexels/Alma Studio

For some of the issues Nesheiwat had to spend patients to a specific type of eye specialist, an ophthalmologist, for additional treatment. Nesheiwat said, “Then it was crazy, we were trying to make appointments for them with the eye specialists and all the eye specialists were booked up within an hour.”

Symptoms May Manifest After A Few Days Have Passed

Nesheiwat prescribed eye drops and nausea medication to some of the patients while advising them to also schedule a follow-up appointment with an eye specialist.

Source: Pexels/Karolina Grabowska

Nesheiwat has also cautioned that symptoms may manifest even after a few days. She emphasizes the importance of getting a comprehensive eye examination done by a medical professional if this occurs.

Cautionary Advise

Nesheiwat has advised that people experiencing any kind of symptoms must refrain from looking directly at the sun. They must also avoid vigorously rubbing their eyes.

Source: Unsplash/thisisengineering

Additionally, it would be best to steer clear of strenuous activities that strain the eyes such as prolonged reading or extensive use of electronic devices. It is also highly recommended that people wear sunglasses with UV protection whenever venturing outdoors.

Defective Solar Eclipse Glasses

Although the vast majority of people took adequate precautions while observing the eclipse, there is a possibility that some may have used solar eclipse glasses that have since been recalled.

Source: Pexels/Оля Жеребцова

On Monday, the Illinois Department of Public Health issued a last-minute recall notice for solar eclipse glasses that may not have met the set safety standards. The agency advised customers to verify if they had purchased glasses labeled “EN ISO 12312-1:2022” while cautioning users against using these glasses to view the eclipse.

Bikini Solar Eclipse Glasses

The defective glasses that have since been recalled  reportedly sold through Amazon. They were listed as “Biniki Solar Eclipse Glasses AAS Approved 2024 – CE & ISO Certified Safe Shades for Direct Sun Viewing (6 Packs).”

Source: Unsplash/Egor Shilref

These glasses were also sold through several Southern Illinois retail establishments, including Highland Tru Buy in Highland, Farm Fresh Market in Breese, Sinclair Foods in Jerseyville, Perry County Marketplace in Pinckneyville, Big John Grocery in Metropolis, and Steelville Marketplace in Steelville.

Risk Of Damage

Dr. Daniel Lattin, an ophthalmologist at Nemours Children’s Health in Jacksonville, Florida explained the kind of damage that can happen when someone looks at the sun directly.

Source: Pexels/Alena Shekhovtcova

Lattin said, “You can get a little bit of a burn to the surface of the eye, or what we call solar keratitis.”

Alarming Symptoms

Lattin also elaborated on the kind of symptoms one may experience when damage has occurred.

Source: Pexels/Wojtek Pacześ

Lattin said, “You can get sort of a burn to that cornea, and that’ll cause redness and tearing and those sorts of symptoms. That should resolve on its own, within a day or two, without any sort of permanent damage.”

Such Injuries Are Rare

Dr. Russell Van Gelder, an ophthalmologist at University of Washington Medicine and the director of the Karalis Johnson Retina Center in Seattle explained that the kind of injuries highlighted above relatively rare.

Source: Pexels/Eric Sanman

Such injuries more frequently observed among mountain climbers who spend extended periods of time at high altitudes without adequate eye protection.

Hard To Get Such An Injury Staring At The Sun During An Eclipse

Gelder explained it is highly unlikely that one would sustain such a serious injury staring at the sun during a solar eclipse.

Source: Pexels/Aviz

Dr. Luxme Hariharan, chief of ophthalmology at Dayton Children’s Hospital in Ohio, has cautioned people, “If you have symptoms of a blind spot, wavy lines, floaters or blurry vision, that could be solar retinopathy after this eclipse, and you need to be seen right away.”

What do you think?

200 Points
Upvote Downvote
Sally Reed

Written by Sally Reed

Sally, a dynamic and viral writer, has taken the literary world by storm with her exceptional storytelling prowess. With an uncanny ability to tap into the collective consciousness of her readers, she crafts narratives that resonate deeply and linger long after the last word is read.

Born with a creative spirit, Sally honed her writing skills from a young age, cultivating a unique voice that blends emotion, wit, and social insight. Her work spans a wide spectrum, from poignant short stories that tug at the heartstrings to thought-provoking essays that challenge conventional thinking.

Leave a Reply


Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

GIPHY App Key not set. Please check settings

Stephen Colbert Taunts Trump After Lawyers Involved In Huge Legal Mistake

The ‘Gun Show Loophole’ Is Coming To An End Thanks to Biden – Here’s What That Means For Unlicensed Gun Dealers