How Long Does the Welder’s Flash Burn Last & How to Cure It

If you’ve experienced passing by a welding shop in your community, then you have an idea of how welding works. This causes sparks that can be too scary for normal people like us.

If you notice, welders are wearing personal protective equipment and clothing for them to protect themselves from any harm like having flash burns because it can be very dangerous to the eyes.

When your eyes get exposed to too much ultraviolet (UV) light, you will get flash burns. This needs to be treated eventually to prevent worse situations. But, how long does it take to heal a flash burn?

Before that, let’s discuss first what a flash burn is. 

What is a Welders Flash Burn?

A flash burn is a painful inflammation of the eyes, particularly the cornea part. Since the cornea covers the front of the eye, it is the one being exposed to the environment. We get a flash burn when we have too much exposure to UV light. We can get this from different sources such as direct sunlight and sunlamps in tanning salons, but welding is the most common one.

If you have a flash burn, your cornea will heal itself without leaving any scar. However, it doesn’t mean you won’t do anything. If you don’t treat your flash burn, it may be infected and can lead to severe eye issues like blindness.

How Long Does Welders Flash Burn Last?

If ever you confirm that you have a flash burn, don’t worry because it can last less than a week. It can be healed after one to three days since your cornea is able to heal itself without any scar. However, if your flash burn worsens as time passes, you should consult a doctor.

How to Know if You Have a Flash Burn

After an encounter with welding or doing welding yourself, and you feel something is wrong with your eyes, you may have a welder’s flash burn.

You can tell it if you feel like there’s something in your eyes even though there isn’t any, you feel your eyes aching after hours, you become sensitive to light, your eyes become watery, your vision becomes blurry, and the skin around your eyes become red, and some other problems.

If you experience this, you should take immediate action to treat your eyes or consult someone knowledgeable about flash burns. 

How to Treat a Flash Burn

When you get a flash burn, keep calm so you can better think of ways how you can carefully deal with it. Don’t worry because it’s treatable. You can actually take immediate action yourself. If you don’t have any idea, you can search through the internet.

If you start feeling symptoms, you can help yourself by staying in a dark room if you become sensitive to light then take pain-reliever medicines such as paracetamol, codeine, or ibuprofen. If you’re wearing contact lenses, make sure to get rid of them until your eyes are already healed.

More importantly, seek professional help because a doctor can give you the right treatment. You will be advised to cover your eyes with a padded dressing, use dilating drops, artificial tear drops or ointment, and antibiotic drops.

You must follow your doctor’s advice on how to use his eye drops or ointment prescription. Moreover, assess yourself from time to time then tell your doctor your situation when he checks you after 24 to 48 hours. If your situation gets severe, you will be transferred to an ophthalmologist

What is a Welders Flash Burn?

How to Prevent Welders Flash Burn

If you are just a normal person passing by a welding shop and you get mesmerized by the sparks it creates, stop yourself right away because watching this can be blinding.

On the other hand, if you are a welder, wearing personal protective equipment and clothing is a must. No matter how used you are to your job, your cornea still needs protection by wearing a welder’s mask, or safety goggles.

Additionally, if you decide to buy sunglasses, make sure to buy one which can protect your eyes from UVA and UVB radiation.


Welders flash burn is a common occurrence, treatable, and won’t last long. You just have to do what is advised by your doctor so you won’t worsen your eye condition. You might also come across sunburn in welders which can be avoided with proper prevention. Above all, prevention is better than cure.

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