Eye HealthLifestyle Topics
Smoking and AMD
Smoking increases the risk of developing macular degeneration—quit smoking to help keep your eyes healthy.
Wait on Cataract Surgery?
An eyeglass prescription change may be all you need to improve your vision with early-stage cataracts.
Protect your sight every day
Wear a hat and sunglasses year round to prevent UV damage to your eyes.
Cozy Home = Dry Eye?
This fall and winter, when indoor heating is in use, a humidifier or a pan of water on the radiator adds moisture to dry air.
Shield Your Eyes From Allergies?
Sunglasses or eyeglasses can help prevent pollen from getting in your eyes.
What Is an Ophthalmologist?
Are You Fit at 40?
A baseline eye exam is recommended at age 40, when the signs of disease and changes in vision may start to occur.
Safely See the Rare Transit of Venus on June 5
Did you enjoy the "ring of fire" solar eclipse on May 20? Then you'll want to catch an even rarer astronomical event, the transit of Venus, on Tuesday, June 5. Just before sunset in most parts of the United States, the planet Venus will be visible as it moves across the face of the sun and partially blocks its light from reaching Earth (find a global viewing map here).
But as with the eclipse, it's crucial that you choose a safe way to view the transit. Looking directly at it would damage your eye's retina, the light-sensitive area at the back of the eye that provides central vision. Since children's eyes are even more sensitive and easily damaged, parents need to caution their kids not to look directly at the sun.
The following devices will not protect your eyes: sunglasses, binoculars with filters, neutral density filters, or exposed photographic or radiographic film.
Safe options include:
- Watch the transit at a planetarium or program by a university astronomy department. Because Venus will look quite tiny against the sun's vast surface, it will be best to watch this amazing event via professional projection on a large screen.
- Visit NASA's website for a live-streaming broadcast and enjoy a live chat with scientists, if you like.
- Make a simple "pinhole camera" using two sheets of white paper: make a pinhole in the center of one sheet; then stand with your back to the sun, holding that sheet so that the sun shines through the pinhole onto the second piece of paper. You'll see a small image of the transit of Venus projected on the second sheet.
This is the last chance for anyone alive today to see the transit of Venus, since it won't happen again until 2117. The complete transit will take about six and a half hours.
Image courtesy of NASA/LMSAL