Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Medical UV rays and the eye

  1. Feb 11, 2010 #1


    User Avatar
    Homework Helper

    It's simply common sense that looking directly into the sun is a bad thing, but what about with your eyes shut? I'm unsure if the UV rays can penetrate the eyelid, or at least if they can, if a significant percentage of the rays get through.

    Is it a factor to consider when tanning for over an hour in the middle of a summer's day without sunglasses on?
  2. jcsd
  3. Feb 11, 2010 #2

    Andy Resnick

    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Education Advisor

  4. Feb 11, 2010 #3


    User Avatar
    Homework Helper

    Is the sunscreen on the eyelid directed at protecting the eye further or the skin?

    I've also heard that the eye is very resistant to ultraviolet radiation - but then again, this could just be a rumour and it also seems counter-intuitive since our natural reaction is to squint when looking at the sun. This squinting process is most likely because of the intensity of light being too high though.
    There is a big emphasis on wearing sunglasses that protect against UV light as well. Back in the day this wasn't a factor many considered important so in essence they wore glasses that blocked out the visible light but let the UV through. This meant you weren't squinting like you normally would so more UV would reach the eye. Are there any confirmed short-term or long-term consequences as a result of this?
Share this great discussion with others via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook