Upcoming Solar Eclipse – What You Need to Know

Those of us here in Illinois are expected to have a phenomenal view of the solar eclipse that will take place on August 21! Don’t miss this opportunity to view one of nature’s most spectacular occurrences with your family and friends.  

Here’s the roundup of everything you need to know about the solar eclipse and how to view it safely:

Chicago Tribune “Proximity to total solar eclipse prompts flurry of events in Chicago area”

WLS AM 890 News “Illinois health experts warn of unsafe solar eclipse viewing”

Chicago Magazine “Should You Go to Southern Illinois to See the Total Solar Eclipse?”

Also, the Illinois Optometric Association has provided a few tips for safe viewing:

·         Get centered and enjoy the view. Within the path of totality, you can safely witness the two or more minutes when the moon completely covers the sun with the naked eye. Otherwise, your eyes should always be protected by verified viewing tools. Never look directly at the sun without eye protection, even briefly. Visit eclipse.aas.org to access eclipse duration charts.

·         Know your duration. Outside the path of totality, always use solar filters. The only safe way to look directly at the uneclipsed or partially eclipsed sun is through special-purpose solar filters or other ISO-certified filters, such as “eclipse glasses” or handheld solar viewers.

·         Be aware of harmful solar exposure. If you stare at the sun without protection, you may experience damage to your retina (the tissue at the back of your eye) called “solar retinopathy.” This damage can occur without any sensation of pain, since the retina does not have pain receptors. The injury can be temporary or permanent. Visit your local doctor of optometry immediately if an accident occurs.

·         Visit your doctor of optometry. Check in with your optometrist for information about safely viewing the eclipse. If you experience any problems with your eyes or vision after the eclipse, an optometrist will be able to provide you with the medical care you need.

You can access additional information and educational materials on the solar eclipse by visiting aoa.org/2017eclipse.

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