Be Prepared for an Eye Emergency
When an eye emergency strikes, quick action may save your sight. Our team at StylEyes is here to walk you through a stressful time. Let us ease the panic and get your eye emergency taken care of.
If you think you may be experiencing an eye emergency, please contact our office. In the event of a traumatic eye injury or another serious ocular emergency, call 911 or go to your nearest emergency room immediately.
Symptoms That Indicate an Eye Emergency
Certain visual symptoms can indicate a major problem, including retinal detachment, acute angle-closure glaucoma, and central retinal vein occlusion. Take note of these warning signs and call your optometrist to seek medical attention if they occur:
- Severe itching
- Bleeding from the eye
- Flashes & floaters
- New, sudden, or severe headaches
- Pupils suddenly different sizes
- A bulging eye
- Sudden eye pain
- Discharge from the eye
- Double vision
- Unexplained redness & irritation
- Bruising in or around the eye
- Blood in the white of the eye
Common Eye Injuries & How to Manage Them
Chemicals in the Eye
A chemical splash or burn can happen anywhere chemicals are found, from at home and in the garden to the job site. Should a chemical enter your eye, follow these steps:
- Thoroughly wash your hands to keep further chemicals from entering your eye
- Immediately flush with cool, clean water for 15 minutes
- If you are wearing contacts, remove them, so the chemical isn’t trapped against your eye
Note the type of chemical that entered your eye, so your medical team can best assist you.
A blow to the head can damage your eyes. Anything that results in a black eye is worth a visit to the optometrist to make sure the internal structures of the eyes are healthy. In the event of eye trauma:
- Gently apply a soothing compress to the area
- Don’t apply too much pressure
- Contact your ocular health team
Head trauma can cause a concussion, which can affect vision. If you suspect a concussion, seek medical attention.
Scratches, Cuts, & Abrasions
Any scratch, cut, or laceration to the eye can be vulnerable to further damage, scarring, or infection. In case of a scratch on the eye:
- Don’t rub the eye or apply pressure
- Cover the eye lightly with something sterile, like gauze
- Seek medical attention
Foreign Objects in the Eye
Whether large or small, foreign objects in the eye can cause pain and irritation. Should something small lodge itself in your eye, like dirt, makeup, an eyelash, or other debris, try flushing it out. Don’t rub your eye—that could push the debris in further, causing scratches and more pain.
If there’s a larger object in the eye or something has punctured the eye, take action with the following steps:
- DON’T attempt to remove the object
- DON’T rub your eyes
- Cover both the affected eye and unaffected eye to restrict eye movement, using gauze or a clean cloth
- If the object is too large to close the eye, use a cup to cover the eye
What NOT to Do
There are some general guidelines on what NOT to do that are useful in nearly any eye emergency:
- DON’T rub your eye
- DON’T put any objects in or around your eye (like tweezers)
- DON’T apply pressure to the eye
- DON’T administer medication, drops, or ointment (saline solution, as is used in some industrial eyewash stations, is an exception to this rule)
- DON’T ignore symptoms
Staying calm and collected in the face of an eye emergency can help preserve your vision.
Here for You in an Ocular Emergency
We cannot stress enough the importance of seeking medical care when your eye has been harmed. Working fast and coordinating your care efforts with our prepared team of professionals can save your sight. Don’t panic—call your optometrist to get the help you need.
Wanna see what we’re all about?
Our practice is located in the same building complex as Noodles & Company and Sleep Number. We also have free parking in front of our office. If you have any questions prior to your visit, please give us a call!
- 6630 Mills Civic Parkway Suite 6120
- West Des Moines, IA 50266
- Phone: 515-225-6447
- Email: [email protected]
Hours of Operation
- Monday: 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM
- Tuesday: 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM
- Wednesday: 8:00 AM – 1:00 PM
- Thursday: 10:00 AM – 7:00 PM
- Friday: 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM
- Saturday: 10:00 AM – 1:00 PM
- Sunday: Closed
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