Damage to the eye is rather common in children, but it can occur to anyone. Many things can get into the eye and scratch or cut it in some way. This type of damage is called corneal abrasions and it needs to be looked at by a doctor to ensure that no serious damage has been done. Treatment helps to protect the eye and your sight.
Almost anything that can touch the eye could cause an injury to it. The cornea is the clear part of your eye. The abrasions of the cornea could be caused by things such as a tree branch, sand, dust, a piece of paper, fingernails, contact lenses, sparks, eye makeup, chemicals, and more.
The Symptoms of an Eye Abrasion
When the cornea of the eye is damaged, it is going to affect your vision in some way. There could be a burning or stinging sensation, and things may appear to be blurred. In addition, there may also be:
- Red or bloodshot eyes
- Watery eyes
- The sensation that something is in your eye
- A sensitivity to light
- A headache
Why Treatment is Necessary
Many cases of corneal abrasions are only minor injuries. The cornea will typically heal itself within about three days. When it is a minor scratch, this type of injury will usually have a full recovery, without any lasting damage to the eye. A deeper scratch could lead to scars, infections, and other damage. Although it will not be seen right away, an abrasion to the eye could possibly cause an infection inside the eye, called an iritis.
Things to Avoid
When you or someone else has suffered an abrasion of the cornea, there are some things you do not want to do. For one thing, do not wear contact lenses while the eye is healing, this could make it worse. Also…
- Do not rub the eye.
- Do not touch the eye with tweezers, cotton swabs, or anything else.
- If an object is embedded in the eye, do not remove it.
After an abrasion occurs, there are some things you can do to help. Start by rinsing the eye with clean water. Using a saline solution is good, too, and it could wash away the problem. Blink several times. You can also pull the upper eyelid over the lower one. This enables the lower eyelashes to brush away something that may be under the upper eyelid.
When to See a Doctor
It is a good idea to see a doctor whenever you experience an injury to the cornea. This includes when you have blurred vision, when the pain in the eye lasts more than just a few hours, when there is a chemical injury, or when the pain to your eye returns after it has seemingly disappeared.
When you have corneal abrasions, the Silver Star Urgent Care clinic is able to treat you. We see all of our patients quickly, enabling you to avoid long waits in a hospital emergency room. Walk-ins are welcome, and we do accept most health insurance plans. We also stay open later than most doctors’ offices – from 8:00 am until 8:00 pm seven days a week.