Corneal Abrasion: How do you know if you have it?

Sat Apr 24 2021

Your cornea is the transparent coating that protects your eye. It gets its black colour due to the underlying structures.

corneal abrasion is like a scratch on the surface of your cornea. It can happen in a split second. If you poke your eye, or something, such as dirt or sand, gets stuck under your eyelid, it can result in corneal abrasion. Generally, your eye will hurt if you have a corneal abrasion and opening the eye will increase the discomfort.

Let’s look at the causes, symptoms, and treatment of corneal abrasion so that you don’t panic if you ever get one.

Corneal Abrasion causes

Any of the following can be a potential cause for corneal abrasion:

  • A fingernail, a marker, or a makeup brush may accidentally poke your eye and can cause a corneal abrasion.
  • Any foreign particle like dirt, sand, sawdust, ash, etc., in your eye can cause irritation. Rubbing your eyes can scratch
  • the cornea. These foreign substances might even cause infection.
  • Getting chemicals in your eyes can lead to corneal abrasion.
  • Using ill-fitting or dirty contact lenses is a common cause of corneal abrasion.
  • An eye surgery without the proper protection may cause a corneal abrasion.

Corneal Abrasion symptoms

The symptoms of corneal abrasion are pretty similar to having something stuck in your eye. 

  • You have the sensation that you have sand or grit in your eye.
  • You might experience pain, especially when opening or closing your eyes.
  • You might notice redness in your eye.
  • Excessive watering of eyes which increases on opening eyes.
  • You will develop sensitivity to light.
  • Your vision will get blurry.

A good nap usually improves the symptoms. If the symptoms do not improve on their own, it’s an indicator that you don’t have something stuck in your eye. In other words, persistent symptoms can indicate corneal abrasion.

Corneal Abrasion Prevention

If you’re feeling some irritation in your eye, try the following steps to help prevent corneal abrasion:

  • Blink your eyes a few times.
  • Pull your upper eyelid up and over your lower eyelid.
  • Rinse the eye with clean water or a sterile saline solution gently.
  • Do not attempt to remove something that has become lodged in your cornea. Let the doctor do it for you.

If you ever have the sensation that something is in your eye, see an eye doctor immediately. The doctor will examine your eye and use an eye stain to see the surface of your cornea. The eye stain will gently remove the foreign substance and eliminate the chances of corneal abrasion due to rubbing.

Corneal Abrasion Treatment

To protect your eye from being infected, your doctor can prescribe antibiotic eye drops or ointment. In addition to pain medication, they can give you medicated eye drops to relieve pain and redness. To prevent light from bothering your eye, the doctor might tape it shut and make you wear a patch over it.

A small scratch can recover in 1 to 3 days on its own. More serious abrasions can require more time.
Make sure that when your eye is healing, you:

  • Don’t rub the eye.
  • Don’t wear contact lenses till your eye doctor says it’s safe.
  • Wear sunglasses to reduce discomfort caused by sunlight.

You should recover from a minor scratch without any permanent eye damage. But deep scratches may cause infections, scars, and other complications. You should take care of your eyes during the treatment phase to avoid any chronic vision problems. Report any peculiar symptoms, including a return of pain after the treatment, to your eye doctor.

Why should you visit Centre For Sight?

The eyes are one of the most delicate organs in your body. Suppose you have a corneal abrasion in your eye, and it goes untreated – it can lead to many issues, including vision loss. No matter what you are suffering from, our doctors and surgeons at Centre For Sight will provide you with the best care possible. We have the largest eye care network in India. With cutting edge technology and over 1,500 competent doctors and surgeons, we will be by your side from your very first visit till you recover. 

Please contact us if you have any concerns about your eyes and want some of the best eye doctors in India to take care of you.

Article: Corneal Abrasion: How do you know if you have it?

Author: CFS Editorial Team  |  Apr 24 2021 | UPDATED 03:00 IST

*The views expressed here are solely those of the author in his private capacity and do not in any way represent the views of Centre for Sight.

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