Last-minute tips for protecting your eyes during the 2017 solar eclipse

Safety first

The Great American Eclipse is over, and we can all forget about it and get on with our lives, right?

Once that occurs, there's not much docs can do about it - now there's no treatment for eclipse blindness other than to wait and see if you start to regain vision, which can take months. The symptoms may not show up for hours.

Doctors' offices say they were getting calls Tuesday from people complaining of headaches or eye strain. Or did you look directly into the sun like a dumb-dumb?

Eye care specialists are urging people to use special solar safe glasses.

It's hard to detect solar retinopathy because a person may not realize that the retina has already been damaged until the symptoms appear, which can happen in a few hours to a few days after exposure, since the retina has no pain receptors.

When turns directly toward the sun, retinal cells get overstimulated by light and produce a chemical, which in excess amounts can damage the surrounding tissue, according to this article. Symptoms begin occurring 12 hours after viewing the eclipse, when people wake up in the morning and notice their vision has been altered, TIME previously reported.

Doctors propose even with protection, watching the sky especially during an eclipse can damage the eyes.

In fact, there are no immediate symptoms associated with damage to the retina, which doesn't have any pain receptors, ophthalmologists say.

So what if you made the same mistake as Trump and looked up with your unprotected eyes?

So what happens to your eyes if you look at the eclipse sans solar sun blockers?

During the eclipse, one of the most important observations was of the sun's corona, the sun's thin, outer atmosphere that's only visible during total eclipses.

Pinhole projection: This is the safest and most cheap way to watch a solar eclipse. It really depends on exactly what happened, and what kind of injury there is at the back of the eye.

And don't feel bad if you did sneak a peek at the eclipse.

Those who tried to view the eclipse directly could suffer from what is known as solar retinopathy - a loss of vision in the retina. If you didn't stare at the eclipse for more than a few seconds, you'll likely be A-OK.

Bottom line: If you think you may have experienced retinal burns and have lost vision or are experiencing blind spots, go see an eye doctor.

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