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You Can Sunburn Your Eyes: Here’s What You Need To Know

You Can Sunburn Your Eyes: Here’s What You Need To Know

As if layers of sun cream and strappy bikini lines weren’t enough to worry about, apparently, we’ve got to think about our eyes burning now too. Yes, you can sunburn your eyes, and here is what you need to know about it.

As if layers of sun cream and strappy bikini lines weren’t enough to worry about, apparently, we’ve got to think about our eyes burning now too. Yeah, that does sound weird, and not to mention totally confusing. How does an eyeball burn? Surely they’d have to tan first? Why can’t holidays be completely stress-free? Yes, you can sunburn your eyes, and here is what you need to know about it.

1. It’s called photokeratitis.

A mega confusing word that you 100% have never heard of, with photo meaning light, and keratitis meaning inflammation of the cornea. But you can call it “snow blindness”. Sounds terrifying, and it kinda is.

2. How do you get it?

Sunburnt eyes usually occur in the summer, with sun rays bouncing off the pavement, the sand, or water, and going straight into your eyes. But don’t think that out of summer you’re fine. Think about bright, snowy wintery days. That white blanket will get you too, as will tanning beds.

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3. What happens?

The bits of your eye that get sunburnt are the cornea and the whites of your eyes. UVA and UVB rays will cause havoc with the cells in your eyes, making them die and shed. Does that sound pleasant? Absolutely not.

4. What are the symptoms?

Most terrifying of all is temporary blindness, but there are plenty of other side effects that you might be stuck with. Redness, swollen eyelids, watery eyes, headaches and foreign body sensations are all things you have to look forward to if you sunburn your eyes. However, they shouldn’t last for more than 12 hours. If they do, find yourself a GP.

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5. How to protect yourself?

Since we can’t, and definitely don’t want to, put sun cream in our eyes, sunglasses are the only protection we have. Grab some that provide 100% protection for UVA and UVB, and go for larger frames to block rays coming from the top or sides of your glasses. Tiny 90’s specs are a no-go, sorry girls.

6. How to heal?

As with any sunburn, it’s a bit of a waiting game when it comes to recovery. Suggestions to ease the pain include staying indoors or sitting in the shade, drinking plenty of water, taking pain relief, and bathing your eyes in cold water.

Did you know you could sunburn your eyes? Let us know what you think in the comments below!
Featured image source: weheartit.com