Welding is a fun yet dangerous task. For some people welding is part of their occupation, while for others it is more of a hobby or an art form. Either way, proper safety gear is necessary to crank out work without getting hurt. Welding helmets with an auto darkening lens are durable and dependable, they protect the face by drastically reducing the amount of exposure while still allowing the welder to see clearly with normal lighting.
If not properly shielded, damage to the eyes can occur such as:
· Retinal burns
· Total loss of vision (blindness)
· Flash burns
Welding helmets with an auto darkening lens are always essential since eye damage can occur over a relatively short period of time. However, the symptoms of retinal damage do not come into effect until 36 hours prior to exposure. Many health hazards can arise from the emission of electromagnetic waves, namely ultraviolet radiation; ultraviolet light is the most frequent cause of radiation based eye injuries. In addition to the ultraviolet exposure risk there are other ways in which the eyes can be damaged without proper protection during welding.
Such risks are:
· Photochemical damage to the retina
o Photochemical damage is a result of exposure to intense blue light
· Thermal damage to the retina
o Thermal damage to the retina occurs when exposed to visible and near infrared radiation
· In all cases, the longer the exposure the greater the damage. Therefore making welding helmets a very important piece of safety equipment. While most welding-related eye injuries are reversible, with over 50 percent of injured workers returning to work in less than two days and 95 percent in about a week. Still, some eye injuries are irreversible and permanent visual impairment can disable even the most skilled welders. Don’t be guilty of a rookie mistake due to overconfidence. Follow the cliche and choose safe over sorry no matter the size of the project. When purchasing a new welding helmet to protect that noggin and pretty little eyes, consider one with an auto darkening lens so you can look like a hardcore pro- yeah rookie, even you.