Eye Injuries Treatment

Self-Care at Home

  • Chemical exposures: The single most important thing to do for chemical exposures is to immediately wash out the eye with great amounts of water. Although saline solution is best, regular tap water is a perfectly
    acceptable alternative. Particularly, for more serious burning materials, such as acid or alkali, time is of the essence. The affected eye should be washed for 20 minutes or more. It is important that you keep your eyelids open during the irrigation process.

    • How to wash out your eye: How it is done is less important than getting it done with great amounts of water.

      • A water fountain makes a great eye wash. Just lean over the fountain, turn on the water, and keep your eye open.
      • At a sink, stand over the sink, cup your hands, and put your face into the running water.
      • If you are near a shower, get in and put your eye under the running water. This is a good option if you have been sprayed with a chemical in the face and hair.
      • Hold a glass of water to your eye and tip your head back. Do this many times.
      • If you are working outside, a garden hose running at a very modest flow will work.
  • Subconjunctival hemorrhage: Minimal treatment is needed. Avoid further trauma to the eye, such as rubbing. This injury will heal with time.
  • Corneal abrasions: Little can be done at home for corneal abrasions. People who wear contact lenses should avoid using their lenses until evaluated by an ophthalmologist. You should seek medical care promptly.
  • Traumatic iritis: Some people become very light sensitive, and sunglasses may help until treatment is begun.
  • Hyphema: Keep your head elevated. Do not lie flat. Keep quiet with minimal activity until you are seen by an ophthalmologist. Do not take aspirin for any pain, because this will increase the risk of bleeding. You should seek medical care promptly.
  • Orbital blowout fractures: Keep your head elevated, and apply ice to your face to reduce swelling. Do not take aspirin for any pain, because this will increase the risk of bleeding.
  • Lid lacerations: You should seek immediate medical care. Do not attempt to put anything directly on the eyeball. Do not take aspirin for any pain, because this will increase the risk of bleeding.
  • Lacerations to the eyeball: Protect your eye, and do not put any pressure on your eye. You should seek immediate medical attention.
  • Foreign bodies: Gentle flushing with water will often dislodge foreign bodies that have not embedded themselves in the cornea. Do not try to rub or wipe off foreign bodies with a tissue, a Q-Tip, or anything else. Doing so will usually not remove an embedded foreign object and will result in a corneal abrasion that may be more painful than the foreign body itself. Intraocular and intraorbital foreign bodies cannot be treated at home.

Caustic Foreign Substance in the Eye (Chemical Burn)

Getting unexpectedly splashed or sprayed in the eye by substances other than clean, harmless water can be scary. Some substances burn or sting but are fairly harmless in the long run, while others can cause serious injury. The basic makeup of the chemical involved can make a lot of difference, such as:

A splash in the eye by anything other than clean water can be scary. Some substances burn or sting but are harmless in the long run; <br /

  • Acid. As a general rule, acids can cause considerable redness and burning but can be washed out fairly easily.
  • Alkali. Substances or chemicals that are basic (alkali) are much more serious but may not seem so because they don't cause as much immediate eye pain or redness as acids. Some examples of alkali substances are oven cleaners, toilet bowl cleaners and even chalk dust.

Chemical exposures and burns are usually caused by a splash of liquid getting in your eye. But they can be caused in other ways as well, such as by rubbing your eyes and transferring a chemical from your hands to
your eyes or by getting sprayed in the eye by hair spray or other aerosols.

If you're splashed in the eye, put your head under a steady stream of barely warm tap water for about 15 minutes. Just let it run into your eye and down your face. Then call your eye doctor or an emergency room/urgent care center to see what is recommended for your eye injury. Tell the person on the phone exactly what kind of substance got into your eye and what you've done about it.

If you know your eye is at risk because it's extraordinarily red or blurry, then just go immediately to your eye doctor or an emergency room or urgent care center after you've rinsed it with water. You can put a cool, moist compress or an ice pack on your eye, but don't rub it.

Depending on the substance, the effects of chemical exposures causing eye injuries can range from minor irritation to serious eye damage and even blindness.


Eye Injuries - Home Treatment

Most minor eye injuries can be treated at home.
  • If you have a cut on your eyelid, apply a sterile bandage or cloth to protect the area. If you don't have a sterile bandage, use a clean cloth. Do not use fluffy cotton bandages around the eye that could tear apart and get stuck in the eye. Keep the bandage clean and dry.
  • To reduce swelling around the eye, apply ice or cold packs for 15 minutes 3 or 4 times a day during the first 48 hours after the injury. The sooner you apply a cold pack, the less swelling you are likely to have. Place a cloth between the ice and your skin. After the swelling goes down, warm compresses may help relieve pain.
  • Do not use chemical cooling packs on or near the eye. If the pack leaks, the chemicals could cause more eye damage. Do not use a piece of raw meat on an injured eye.
  • Keep your head elevated to help reduce swelling.
  • Try a nonprescription pain medicine such as acetaminophen, ibuprofen, or aspirin to relieve pain. Do
    not take aspirin if you are younger than 20
    unless your doctor tells you to.

More specific home treatment can be used for certain types of eye injuries.

If your eye symptoms are not completely gone after 24 hours of home treatment, see your doctor.

Eye injury in a child

Applying first aid measures for an eye injury in a child may be difficult, depending on the child's age, size, and ability to cooperate. Having another adult help you treat the child is helpful. Stay calm and talk in a soothing voice. Use slow, gentle movements to help the child remain calm and cooperative. A struggling child may need to
be held strongly so that first aid can be started and the seriousness of the eye injury assessed.


Homeopathic Remedies for Eye Strain and Eye Injuries

Aconitum napellus: This remedy may bring relief when foreign matter gets into the eye and causes irritation. The person feels fearful and agitated — with eye pain, heavy watering, and heightened sensitivity to light.

Apis mellifica: This remedy can be helpful if the eyelids and surrounding areas get very puffy and tender, with burning or stinging pain that cold applications partially relieve. Apis can also be useful after overexposure to very bright light (looking at snow in bright sunlight or sun reflecting off the water for long periods, driving into the sun, etc.) when the eyes feel sore and oversensitive.

Argentum nitricum: Aching from overuse or detailed work, relieved by closing the eyes or pressing on them, suggests a need for this remedy. The muscles around the eyes feel weak and the person is unable to keep them focused and steady. The whites or corners often look inflamed. Being in an overheated room may aggravate the symptoms.

Arnica: This remedy can bring relief to a person with a bruised, sore feeling in the eyes after closely-focused work or from looking into the distance (sightseeing, watching movies, etc. ) The person may feel a need to keep the eyes open, getting dizzy when closing them.

Kali phosphoricum: This remedy can be helpful when exhaustion from illness, overwork, or stress has led to eyestrain. The eyes feel very tired and the vision seems blurred and weak. A person who needs this remedy often startles easily and is oversensitive to light.

Kalmia latifolia: Great stiffness felt in the eyes and eyelids, worse when moving the eyes, suggests a need for this remedy. The vision may seem to be impaired or weak. A person who needs this remedy may also have nerve pains in the face and teeth, or joint and muscle stiffness that shifts from place to place.

Natrum muriaticum: This remedy may be useful if extended periods of reading or doing schoolwork have led to a weak, bruised feeling in the eyes. The muscles around the eyeballs can feel weak and stiff, and the letters on a page may appear to run together. The eyelids feel heavy, and the person may be inclined toward headaches.

Ruta graveolens: This remedy is often indicated for eyestrain caused by overuse. Stiffness and pain can lead to headaches, and soreness and pressure are felt behind the eyeballs. The eyes may become inflamed and swollen, with heavy watering and oversensitivity to light. The person may also have problems with focusing the eyes or
accommodating to changes in brightness.

Symphytum: This is an important remedy when the eyeball has been bruised or injured by a blow from a blunt object (for example a tool-handle, baseball, or rock). Injuries to the eyeball can be serious, and should always be examined by a doctor.


The Top 10 Causes of Eye Injuries ... and How You Can Prevent Them

1. Household Chemicals

2. Workshop and Yard Debris

3. Battery Acid

4. Sports Accidents

5. Overexposure to Ultraviolet (UV) Light

6. Fireworks

7. Toys and Games

8. Furniture Corners

9. Work-Related Injuries

10. Airbags


Using Compresses

• Using a compress will soothe the eye. To make a compress, use a cotton pad or very clean cloth. Choose a remedy discussed below and apply a compress for at least 10 minutes as often as needed.
• One of the easiest remedies to use is the warm or cold water compress. Put a warm compress over the eyes to soothe them and prevent the sticky discharge from drying on the lashes, and a cold one to shrink the swelling and reduce the itchiness. Do this for five minutes three or four times a day.
• Many of the bacteria that cause conjunctivitis don't like heat, so a hot compress will be helpful. Use a hot compress three to four times a day, but test the temperature before putting it over the eye to make sure it isn't too hot.


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This list shares personal experience and information only and should not be taken as medical advice. All opinions and information shared are the views of the individual member.

Everyone must use her own discretion and judgment to determine whether you are comfortable or need to seek professional assistance. We are not your doctor.

The information contained in these pages is not intended to take the place of your health professional's advice. It is derived from our personal experience and research, and may shed light on your health complaints. In case of serious ailments which may not respond favorably, please seek the counsel of a qualified health professional.

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