My eye feels scratched

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Postby Julian » Sat Oct 31, 2009 6:49 pm

I felt like I had something in my eye yesterday, but I couldn't see anything there when I looked in the mirror. I tried to scratch it out of my eye, tried rinsing with eye dropes, and tried washing it out with a wet towel. Nothing seemed to help and I figured maybe it would go away on its own. It's been almost 24 hours and it still feels like something is in my eye. I'm wondering if I scratched my eye. Is there something I can do to remove whatever it is in my eye?

Postby george » Mon Nov 16, 2009 5:07 am

First off, I'm not an eye doctor, but I can at least direct you to other information on the web.

Before going any further, it sounds to me like you need to seek medical attention. I wouldn't want any longer as you could do more damage by waiting, and when it comes to your vision, you shouldn't mess around.

According to the Mayo Clinic website, if you scratched your eye, it would be considered a corneal abrasion. Highlights from the linked information are:

Corneal abrasions are usually just superficial - a slight scratch on the surface of the eye. These can get infected and become a corneal ulcer.

It can feel like sand in your eye and it can be painful.

You should get medical help, but things you can do before seeing the doctor are:

1. Rinse your eye with clean water or saline solution if it is available. Rinsing your eye may wash out anything that is in your eye leading to the scratch.

2. Blink several times as this movement may remove any item that led to the scratch.

3. Pull your top eyelid over the bottom eyelid. The eyelashes on the bottom eyelid can brush any item that is maybe stuck to the inside of your top eyelid.

4. Do NOT try to remove anything that is sticking into your eyeball (which just sounds gross). Also avoid trying to remove an object large enough that makes it difficult to close your eye.

5. Do NOT rub your eye after it got injured. Touching or pressing can make a corneal abrasion worse.

6. Do NOT touch your eyeball with any instruments or items such as cotton swabs or tweezers as this can make a corneal abrasion worse.

The Mayo website also had some useful information for an item that could be stuck in your eye, referred to as a foreign body.

They include a lot of the same information above for removing objects, but they also have some suggestions to have someone else help you out:

1. The other person should wash their hands.
2. You should sit in a well-lit area.
3. Have the person gently look in the eye to find the object. Have them pull the bottom eyelid down while you are looking up, and hold the top eyelid while you are looking down.
4. If the person can see the item floating in the tears on the surface of your eye, they can try flushing it out with saline solution or clean, lukewarm water. If they are able to get it removed, they should still flush the eye with more saline solution or clean, lukewarm water.

They also have information on when you should get help:

1. If you can't remove the object.
2. If the object is actual stuck in the eyeball.
3. There is abnormal vision.
4. There is pain, redness, or a feeling that the object is still there even after the item is removed (my guess is because there is probably a corneal abrasion, for which you should seek medication attention).

The bottom line is that from what I've read, it sounds like you could have a corneal abrasion. You could have someone else take a look and see if they can see an object, because if they can remove it, maybe the sensation will go away sooner. Maybe there was something in your eye that is now gone, but you may have scratched it and it just feels like something is still there. The scratches often can't be seen with the naked eye, so you'd need to see a doctor to examine it.

Good luck, and let me know what happens.
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Postby IntroWellness » Wed Apr 13, 2022 2:18 pm

As an optometrist, I feel that Gary's differential is right. A corneal abrasion can definitely present as if there is something in your eye. On average, they typically resolve within 24-48 hours. On the other hand, dry eye disease can present the same way. The main difference is dry eye disease comes and goes and is often significantly less painful. What Gary recommended should be tried. However, regardless, I recommend seeing an eye doctor for a proper evaluation and treatment plan.
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