Whether the news anchor was talking about where to watch it or how to look at it safely, if you’ve turned on the news at any point in the last month or so, you’ve probably seen some coverage of the solar eclipse. This is for good reason, too! It’s not every year that we get the chance to see a total solar eclipse. In fact, it’s been 99 years since a total solar eclipse has passed over America.
But just because we get a chance to see this once-in-a-lifetime phenomenon, that doesn’t mean you should go ahead and stare directly at it. In fact, even advanced polarized sunglasses in Cape Cod aren’t enough to shield your eyes when staring directly at a solar eclipse. In order to safely look at the solar eclipse, you need to purchase special glasses. Unfortunately, folks out there are selling counterfeit glasses to make a quick buck off of unsuspecting customers. Keep reading to learn more about these special glasses and what you need to know about buying a pair:
- Check for standards: Like a lot of products on the market, real solar eclipse glasses have to meet certain safety standards to be considered safe. Real solar eclipse glasses must meet ISO 12312-2 international safety standards in order to be considered legitimate. If your glasses don’t say anything about these standards, don’t wear them during the eclipse! It’s also not a bad idea to do a quick Google search on the glasses you’re thinking about buying. You can learn a lot about a product from a quick search.
- Wear the right size: You wouldn’t wear a pair of sunglasses in Cape Cod that are too big, would you? If they don’t fit, they won’t look good, and they won’t work as well as they’re supposed to. The same holds true for solar eclipse glasses. If the glasses don’t fit snuggly on your face, they’re not going to totally protect you from the sun’s harmful rays. Sunlight can still penetrate the sides of the glasses if they aren’t flush to your face, which will cause big problems.
- The consequences: Anyone who’s ever gotten a sunburn knows the awesome power the sun holds over us. If the sun can damage our skin, just imagine what it can do to our eyes! Staring directly at the sun can cause solar retinopathy. This is what results when the sun’s rays destroy the photoreceptors in your retina, which are responsible for converting light particles into images. It goes without saying that you want your photoreceptors to stay healthy. Remember that you can’t just wear sunglasses in Cape Cod during an eclipse—put your protective glasses on!
We want you to enjoy any solar eclipse you’re able to throughout your lifetime, but we want you to do so safely. Be sure that you buy and wear real protective glasses while looking at the eclipse. If you’re unsure if the glasses you own are the real deal, bring them to Bayview Optometrics. We’ll gladly check them out and let you know if they’re safe to use.