An eye emergency occurs any time you have a foreign object or chemical in your eye, or when an injury or burn affects your eye area. Make sure to seek immediate medical attention if you ever experience swelling, redness, or pain in your eyes. Without appropriate treatment, eye damage can lead to a partial loss of vision or even permanent blindness.
If you notice any of these signs in yourself or someone else, get medical help right away:
– The person has obvious pain or trouble seeing or has a cut or torn eyelid.
– One eye does not move as well as the other or one eye sticks out compared to the other.
– The eye has an unusual pupil size or shape or there is blood in the clear part of the eye.
– The person has something in the eye or under the eyelid that can’t be easily removed.
For all eye injuries: Do not touch, rub or apply pressure to the eye. Do not try to remove the object stuck in the eye on your own. Also, do not apply ointment or medication to the eye. See a doctor as soon as possible.
If your eye has been cut or punctured: Gently place a shield over the eye and do not rinse with water or try to remove the object stuck in the eye. Do not rub or apply pressure to eye. Avoid giving aspirin, ibuprofen or other NSAIDs as they medicine thin the blood and may increase bleeding.
In the case of a chemical burn to the eye: Immediately flush the eye with plenty of clean water and seek emergency medical treatment right away.
To treat sand or small debris in the eye: Use water to flush the eye out. Do not rub the eye. If the debris still doesn’t come out, lightly bandage the eye and see an eye doctor or visit the nearest hospital.