Solar Glasses Essential To See Eclipse, Tulsa Expert Says

Thursday, August 17th 2017, 6:06 pm
By: News On 6

The first solar eclipse since 1989 is right around the corner, and people are scrambling to find safety glasses. To protect your eyes, it's important to use the right kind of glasses.

 STEMcell Science Shop ordered 8,000 solar eclipse glasses.

"Last Friday, it was the day. It felt like it was the day before Christmas or something," said Jessie Mudge, owner of STEM Cell Science Shop in the Boxyard, 502 East 3rd Street.

In a matter of days, shop owner Jessie Mudge says they were completely gone.

"Like two weeks. Maybe not even that long," she said. "We got orders from every state except for Hawaii."

 Dr. Thomas Finley says having those glasses is essential. Because even if it looks dark outside, the sun could cause permanent damage to your eyes.

"People - when they look at the sun or look at the eclipse - don't realize the intensity of the sun," said Dr. Thomas Finley, retina specialist.

8/16/2017 Related Story: Eclipse Watch Parties Planned For Monday, August 21

"With an eclipse, you do have significant blockage of the sun, so it's tempting to look up and see what it would look like with the naked eye."

Dr. Finley says a common misconception is that welding masks like these provide the same protection, too. But he says your safest bet to avoid long-lasting eye damage is NASA approved glasses.

"It meets a specific standard as far as blocking out light rays into the eye, and it dims it enough that it doesn't create significant retinal damage," the doctor said.

 Finley says it's especially important to keep your eye on your kids during the eclipse.

"Even if they're wearing glasses, if they're ill-fitting or they're slipping off, there may be temptation to look around the glasses," Dr. Finley said.