In some cases your eye may be injured to the extent that it will be obvious that you need to seek immediate medical attention, such as in cases where there is a deep puncture to the eye. However, in other cases you may injure your eye in such a way that you have a hard time determining whether or not you should seek treatment. The information in this article can help you to know whether or not your eye injury is serious enough for you to see your optometrist or seek emergency medical treatment.
You scratch your eye
If you scratch your eye it will be normal for you to experience some pain and redness. You can also expect your eye will water a lot and be sensitive to light. While you may consider putting off treatment because you feel the scratch wasn't very hard, the damage may be serious and you should have it checked out right away.
A scratch or poke to the eye can cause permanent damage to certain areas, such as the cornea, which is the eye's outermost layer. Damage to your eye can also lead to an infection caused by bacteria getting in the eye. Certain bacteria can put you at risk of serious optical damage and even possible blindness in the affected eye.
Keep your eye closed as much as possible until you get treatment. This will help prevent more bacteria from entering the scratched area and putting you at an even greater risk for infection.
A small object gets in your eye
If you get something in your eye and you aren't sure what it is, you can try to flush your eye. To flush the object out, put your face under the sink tap and allow a light stream of water to enter your eye. If you aren't able to get the object to come out, then your next step is to get in for treatment.
Tip: Do not try to get the object out by rubbing your eye, because this may lead to you scratching your eye.
If you know what you have in your eye and it's anything more than an eyelash or dust, then don't bother flushing it and get in for treatment right away.
You get a cleaner in your eye
If you get a household cleaner or another chemical in your eye, you want to get immediate treatment. Certain chemicals can lead to serious problems, including blindness.
As soon as you get a chemical in your eye, you want to begin flushing it with water. Hold your head in the sink and splash as much water as you can into your eye as quickly as possible. After flushing the eye, get emergency medical treatment.
Anytime you experience even a slight trauma to your eye it's always best to pay a visit to your optometrist just so you can rule out problems that may require treatment.