Preventing and caring for common eye injuries

Preventing and caring for common eye injuries

Whether they’re caused by floating specks of debris or heavy trauma, eye injuries can be painful and serious. Fortunately, the majority of these injuries can be prevented and treated.

Scratched eyes 
If you’ve ever experienced a corneal abrasion, you’re familiar with how uncomfortable they can be. All About Vision explained that scratched eyes are often caused by microscopic debris, like dust or sand, that gets trapped beneath the eyelid and damages the cornea. Being poked in the eye by a foreign object can also result in scratches. While sometimes you’re conscious of the scratch the moment it occurs, other times you may start feeling symptoms unexpectedly, especially if the reason behind the abrasion was a small speck of dirt that entered the eye unnoticed.

Scratched eyes can be itchy, painful and uncomfortable, and can result in visible redness and increased sensitivity to light. You should never patch a scratched eye, as this can promote the development of bacteria. Rubbing the eye can also exacerbate the damage, so it’s important to resist the urge to touch the injured area. Corneal abrasions should be treated professionally; therefore, seek medical attention if you sustain a scratch.

Prevent corneal abrasions by putting on proper eyewear before you go outside such as sunglasses and goggles. They are effective shields and protect  eyes from the elements.

Chemical burns 
While people who work in labs usually wear goggles while handling chemicals, chances are you don’t do the same when cleaning your home. However, many of the substances that are used to disinfect your house can also be extremely damaging if they find their way into your eyes. If cleaners come into contact with your eyes for any reason, you should take action immediately.

Everyday Health explained that you should flush out your eyes with water right away. Even if you don’t feel pain instantly, you shouldn’t hesitate to rinse your eyes thoroughly. The best way to do this is to stand beneath a shower head with your eyes open, or to stick your face under a running faucet. Hold your eyes open and allow them to be flushed out for at least 15 minutes. After a thorough wash, you should still go to the emergency room. Be sure to tell your doctor exactly what substance entered your eye, so that your treatment can be as effective as possible.

Eye bleeding 
Bleeding eyes, or subconjunctival haemorrhages, can be visually startling, though many times these injuries are relatively mild. In fact, many people don’t realize they’re experiencing eye bleeding until they look in the mirror or are alerted by a concerned friend. Patient explained that subconjunctival haemorrhages are usually the result of broken blood vessels located just beneath the surface of your eye. Because the blood isn’t absorbed, it remains stuck underneath your eye’s clear conjunctiva. Typically, these haemorrhages look like bright red spots on the whites of your eyes. Their appearance can be severe, but they’re usually quite benign.

The source explained that eye bleeding is usually the result of  activity that strains blood vessels, like lifting heavy objects ,coughing, sneezing, and even vomiting. Occasionally, the haemorrhages are side effects of other eye conditions, like infections or intense rubbing.

When it comes to healing subconjunctival haemorrhages, there’s no strict course of treatment. If you’re experiencing additional symptoms, like dryness or itchiness, you may want to use over-the-counter eye drops to soothe the discomfort. Otherwise, this issue usually takes care of itself in a few days when the blood is absorbed.

Many ocular injuries are accidental, so always be cautious and proactive about protecting your eyes. If you sustain serious damage, don’t hesitate to seek medical treatment.

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