Most everyone knows exactly what to do if they cut a finger or burn themselves while cooking, but very few know how to handle an eye care emergency! When faced with an emergency situation, it’s natural to panic, but staying calm is important. Call our office and our doctors will provide you with first aid advice over the phone; if needed, we will also schedule an appointment for you to be seen immediately.
If you need urgent eye care outside of our regular business hours, call our office and we will return your message as soon as we’re able. For injuries that involve penetration of the eye or that cause bleeding or severe pain, call 911 or visit your nearest emergency room for treatment.
The American Optometric Association recommends seeking immediate medical attention if you experience any of the following symptoms:
👁 Burning or stinging
👁 Double vision
👁 Lost or decreased vision
👁 One eye isn’t moving like the other
👁 Sensitivity to light
👁 Bruising or bleeding around the eye
👁 Blood in the white of the eye
👁 Severe itching
Often the result of accidents, traumatic eye injuries can cause swelling, vision changes, redness, light sensitivity, and pain. These injuries can lead to permanent vision loss without prompt treatment.
After flushing your eye at home for 15 minutes with saline or distilled water, our providers will want to see you at our office to ensure that there is no lasting damage to your eye.
If a particle is lodged in your eye, don’t rub it, as this can cause corneal abrasion. Flushing the eye with saline spray can help dislodge the particle; if this does not work, keep your eye closed and schedule an emergency eye doctor appointment.
If you have noticeable vision changes that occur suddenly, it may be a sign of a corneal or retinal defect that requires urgent treatment. These changes may include flashing lights, spots, or floaters.
Although often dismissed as pink eye, eye redness can also be a sign of uveitis or ocular herpes, which can put your vision at risk. For this reason, we recommend scheduling an appointment to assess your red eye.
While some people are born with different-sized pupils (a condition called anisocoria), for others it occurs after an injury or due to an underlying condition. Because these conditions may be serious, it requires evaluation by an optometrist.
Bulging eyes can be a sign of a number of different conditions, but some of them are quite serious, such as a bacterial infection called perceptual cellulitis. When left untreated, this infection can spread to the brain.