We have a 24-hour phone line for emergencies and will make sure that our patients will be seen as soon as possible.
Foreign Bodies in the Eye
A foreign body in the eye is very uncomfortable, but most of the time it can be removed without needing to see an eye doctor (see below for tips). However, if you are concerned about being unable to remove it, or that it is something more dangerous such as glass or a chemical, call us immediately. Scroll below to see how to try and remove the object yourself. Should this not be enough, or you want assistance, contact our office immediately.
I got hit in the eye with a baseball, is that dangerous for my vision?
Yes. Trauma to the eye can cause a retinal bleed or detachment, among other potential damage.
Should I visit an eye doctor if I got a black eye?
If the trauma is directly to the eye or the black eye is severe, then yes. If vision is affected, then definitely. If in doubt, go to your eye doctor.
I have pain in my eye after getting a black eye, should I visit the emergency room or an eye doctor?
It is always best to see an optometrist if possible. We have the specific training and equipment required for treating eye emergencies.
What should I do if I spill chemicals in my eye?
If chemicals are spilled in the eye, it is best to thoroughly rinse the eye with water. Tap water is fine. The water can come from a shower, a kitchen sink sprayer or, if outside, a hose. You can pour water from a glass or bucket. The key is to use a lot of water and to do it immediately. You should do it up to 30 minutes, depending on how much chemical and what kind of chemical you get in your eyes. After rinsing, you should call your eye doctor.
What should I do if I get sand, metal, or wood, in my eyes?
For one of the above materials in the eye, try to rinse it out with water as described in the previous section. If the eye is then comfortable, it is likely that you have been successful. If there is still a foreign body sensation, you should see an eye doctor. It is always best to see an eye doctor, either an optometrist or an ophthalmologist, rather than going to an urgent care center or an emergency room. If that is not possible, then an urgent care center or an emergency room will probably be better than not being seen at all.
Did you Get Something in Your Eye?
We receive a lot of calls about removing something stuck in your eye (foreign body removal). In most cases this can be done from the comfort of your own home. If you are having difficulty removing it, are concerned that the object is dangerous such as chemicals, glass, or wood splinters, call our practice to schedule and emergency appointment. Our eye doctor’s office is equipped with special equipment that allow us to identify and take out an object stuck in the eye.
How to remove a stuck object from your eye yourself:
- Vigorously wash your hands with soap and water, this applies to others who are helping you as well.
- Have a friend try to find the object or if you are alone use a mirror.
- Try blinking as tears and natural lubricant in your eyes may wash it out.
- Attempt to flush out the object with water at room temperature. You can pour the water from cup or bottle, or use a slowly running faucet or shower. Make sure you wait enough time so that a size-able amount of water has been used.
- Gently pull your upper eyelid over your lower eyelid and roll your eyes.
- Use a sterile cotton swab and gently wipe the inner corners of your eye. Make sure to focus your eyes on the opposite direction of where you feel the object.
Never rub your eyes as this may cause scratches to your eye which can lead to infection or worse. Never try to self treat a chemical that went in your eye. In the event of a chemical, quickly wash the eye for 15 minutes under a faucet and call your eye doctor to find out what to do for the chemical that you were exposed to.
Other types of eye emergencies include Eye floaters which are spots, squiggles or flecks that appear to drift into your visual field.