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A welding mask is a personal protective equipment used in certain types of welding to protect the eyes, face and neck from burns, ultraviolet radiation, sparks, infrared light and high temperatures. It is most commonly used during electric arc welding, non-consumable electrode welding and semi-automatic gas-shielded welding. Welding masks are essential to prevent ophthalmia (inflammation of the cornea) and retinal burns leading to loss of vision. Both types of damage are caused by direct exposure to concentrated ultraviolet and infrared radiation during arc welding . Ultraviolet radiation from the welding arc can also damage exposed skin (damage similar to sunburn).