At the onset of an eye injury, it can be difficult you to know the extend of damage, if any has been done to your eye(s). Eye injuries could occur at any time, including while playing sports, intentional or unintentional blow to the eye, doing work around your home, flying objects, or chemical splashes. Here are three critical steps you should take if you or one of your children has an eye injury.

Apply a Cold Compress

In the case of a blunt force eye injury, like being hit by a ball, fist, or flying object, you can expect your eye to swell up very quickly. Applying a cold compress can help minimize swelling, bruising, and pain. Do not use a steak or other food item because these items could allow bacteria to get into your eye. Because the slightest blow to your eye could cause a retinal detachment, you should have your eye examined as soon as possible.

Flush the Eye with Water

If you get sand, dust, dirt, or other small particles in your eye, you should rinse it with running tap water, saline solution, or eyewash. You should seek medical help if flushing your eye fails to remove the particles. If chemicals have splashed or been sprayed in your eye, you should immediately flush it with lots of clean water and seek immediate medical treatment.

Gently Cover the Eye

If your eye has been cut, punctured, or has something stuck in it, you should put a protective cover over it. Taping a paper cup over your eye can suffice as a protective shield until you get emergency medical assistance. Do not attempt to remove anything that may be stuck in it or rub your eye. Do not rinse your eye either.

Do not risk permanent damage to your eye. Seek immediate medical treatment for all serious eye injuries and even those that may not seem so serious. After receiving emergency treatment, call the Valley Eyecare Center at (602) 955-2700 to schedule an eye exam to determine if any damage has been occurred.