Injuries can affect any part of our bodies, including our eyes. While some accidents and injuries that affect the eyes can be dealt with at home, and shouldn’t have any lasting consequences, there are others that absolutely necessitate an emergency visit to your eye doctor.
Here are some of the top eye emergencies that mean that you should see an eye doctor.
Contrary to what many people believe, bleeding in the eye doesn’t necessarily lead to blood leaking from your eye. Bleeding within the eye can manifest as significant redness or a bloodshot appearance. While most eye-bleeding is harmless, being caused by a small broken blood vessel in the outer part of the eye, there are some instances when bleeding is very serious and can have permanent consequences for your vision. As such, if you suspect your eye may be bleeding, particularly if you have suffered a trauma to your face, you should see your eye doctor as soon as possible.
Chemicals can be found in all sorts of products, from cleaning fluids like furniture polish to hairspray. Unfortunately, these chemicals can cause significant damage if they come into contact with your eyes. This can occur in one of two ways – you could either accidentally spray or otherwise get the chemical directly into your eye, or you could transfer some of the hazardous substance to your eyes using your fingers. The latter could happen if you touch the chemical with either bare or gloved hands and then immediately touch your eyes.
If you suffer a chemical burn, you should rinse your eyes immediately using fresh, cool water. Let the water stream into your eyes for at least 10 minutes to flush out as much of the chemical as possible. However, then you will need to see your eye doctor to ensure that there is no lasting damage to your eyes or vision.
Small particles can easily enter our eyes and become lodged there. Although your first instinct might be to rub it, you should avoid doing this as it could cause the debris to scratch and damage your eye. Instead, you should try and flush it out using a steady, forceful stream of water or saline. In many cases, flushing is successful, but if not, you should arrange to see an eye doctor immediately. This is because some foreign bodies, particularly those which are metallic, can cause rusting spots on the eye if they are left untreated.
It isn’t uncommon for eyes to feel sore from time to time. This can occur if they have been irritated, if you have been rubbing them excessively or if you have eye allergies. Your eyes can also sometimes feel painful if you have a severe headache or migraine. However, any significant and persistent eye pain must always be treated as an emergency. While many eye conditions aren’t painful, there are some, such as the sudden onset of glaucoma, which can cause acute discomfort and need urgent attention to prevent damage to your vision. As such, any sudden, severe or persistent eye pain means that you need to see your eye doctor as soon as possible.
You are probably used to your vision staying fairly consistent, so if there are any sudden changes, you need to seek professional attention immediately. This could be seeing double, noticing floaters or flashing in your vision, sudden dark patches, loss of peripheral or central vision, or something else entirely. If you experience any sudden changes to your vision, it’s important not to ignore them and get your vision checked by your eye doctor as soon as you can.
For more information about top eye emergencies that require a doctor, or to schedule an appointment to have your eyes assessed by our expert team, please contact our optical office today.