Scratched eye or corneal abrasion is a scratch that occurs on the white part of the eye which covers the iris, called the cornea. This generally happens when the surface layer of the cornea is injured.
You may experience symptoms such as pain in the cornea, photophobia, uncomfortable sensation in the eye along with an excess amount of tears. You may have blurred vision due to the swelling of the cornea and excessive tears, as well as a crusty buildup of the tears may also be present.
Some of the main causes of corneal abrasion can be, poking a finger or anything pointed into the eye, rubbing the eye, or by getting grit in the eye. Sometimes a foreign body such as eyelash hair or fingernail can also scratch an eye when you rub it. Hard or dry contact lenses can also be the cause of corneal abrasion.
How to Cure a Scratched Eye at Home
Though prompt medical attention is preferable, you can try to do your own basic first aid at home, because if it is left unattended for a long time, it can lead to corneal ulcer and a host of other eye problems.
You can also use a saline solution of salt and water to clean up your eye. You can do this by tilting your head back, slightly on the side of the injured eye and pouring water in it. While doing this, make sure that water does not get into your nostrils. This treatment may seem tough but it is considered to be one of the most effective remedies.
Another scratched eye treatment is that you can immerse your head in a sink full of water, keeping your eyes open.
These treatments should be done only when you are sure that the scratch is just a minor one. If you are suffering from intense pain and swelling, try to put a cold compress to relieve the pain, and keep your eyes closed. Always wear sunglasses whenever you have to step outside. Serious conditions will require immediate medical attention.
Medical Treatment for Scratched Eye
If you happen to injure your cornea seriously, you will have to show your eye to an ophthalmologist, who will diagnose your problem, and treat your eye condition specifically. Ophthalmologists often recommend antibiotics in the form of eye-drops, especially steroid eye-drops, to reduce inflammation, and also to avoid possible scarring.
Anesthetic eye-drops may also be used to instantly relieve the pain that might be bothering you, but usually these are not recommended for home use. This is because it may interfere with the natural healing process.
If by chance you have any rusty metallic deposits in the injured cornea, your ophthalmologist may recommend a tetanus injection as well as anesthetic eye drops to relieve eye pain.
So these were some of the suggestions on how to treat a scratch on the eye. But remember that protecting your eyes by taking necessary precautions is always better than treating a scratched eye.
Always wear protective eye gear in places where you think chances are high to result in scratching of eye. If you are wearing contact lenses, take good care to maintain hygiene, and never sleep with them on.
Disclaimer: This is for informative purposes only, and should not be used as a replacement for expert medical advice.