Medical Advice

First aid in case of eye injuries

There are many situations in which you hurt your eyes and do not know how to act. In this article we present you several solutions for such problems.

Foreign object in the eye (Corneal erosion)

If a foreign object has entered the eye, try to get it out with clean water or a saline solution.

Eye injury

Eye injury

In order to help someone else:

  1. Wash your hands thoroughly;
  2. Ask the “victim” to sit in a well lit area;
  3. Gently examine the eye to find the object. Maintain the low eyelid still and ask the person to look up. Then keep the upper eyelid still and ask the person to look down;
  4. If the object floats on the surface of the eye, try to flush the eye to remove it. Use a saline solution or warm water and clean the eye.

Attention! Do not try to remove the object if it is stuck in the eyeball. Do not rub the eye.

You must consult a doctor when:

  • You cannot remove the object;
  • The object is stuck in the eyeball;
  • Your vision is blurred;
  • Pain, redness and the sensation that something is stuck in the eye persists even after the object was removed.

Corneal erosion (scratch)

The most common injuries affect the cornea of the eye – the transparent, protecting “window”. The cornea may be scratched or cut in contact with dust, dirt, sand, wood shavings, metal particles or even the edge of a sheet of paper. Usually, the scratch is superficial and this is called corneal erosion.

Some of the corneal erosions become infected and cause corneal ulcer, which is a very serious affection. Moreover, daily common activities can cause corneal erosions.

For example, playing a sport, cleaning the house or playing with your children – can become dangerous activities for your eyes. So, be attentive!

As the cornea is very sensitive, the erosions can be quite painful. If you have just a scratch, the sensation is similar to that of sand in the eye. Tearing, blurred vision, redness in and around the eye may suggest corneal erosion.

In case of injury, seek prompt professional care. The immediate steps you can make are:

  • Put drops of warm water over the eye or flush it with clean water. Many workplaces are equipped for such situations.
  • Rinse your eye several times. This action may remove small particles of dust or sand.
  • Pull the upper eyelid over the lower one. The eyelashes of the lower eyelid can remove a foreign body on the inner surface of the upper eyelid.

Warning! Do not apply patches or ice bags on the eye. If an object has penetrated the eye, do not press on the eyeball.

Do not rub the eye after an injury. This may worsen the corneal erosion.

Black eye

The so called “black eye” is caused by bleeding that occurs under the skin around the eye. Sometimes a black eye can indicate an injury to the skull, if it was caused by a blow.

If the eye does not indicate a serious problem, bleeding occurs in the eye (hyphema) and it can affect the vision and cornea. In some cases it can lead to an abnormal intraocular pressure (glaucoma).

Apply a cold pack or a towel with ice on the affected area, pressing gently. Put theses packages on the eye immediately after the injury is produced, in order to reduce inflammation. Make sure that there are no blood spots on the surface of your eye.

Consult immediately a doctor if you have vision problems, experience pain or if your eyes or nose bleed.

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