Simply put, corneal abrasion is a scratch on your eye. The scratch can happen in a second or two when dust or dirt gets trapped under your eyelid or when you accidentally poke your eyes. Since the scratch can occur instantly and at any time, it needs to be treated immediately.
Let’s understand the condition of corneal abrasion, its symptoms, causes, and treatment.
What is Corneal Abrasion?
The cornea is the front of the eyes, acting as a protective window. It is the clear part that covers the iris and safeguards the pupil. The cornea plays a crucial role in focusing on the light that allows us to see.
Corneal abrasion is a minor scratch or cut on the cornea. A scratched cornea makes your eyes vulnerable to infections and can cause you severe discomfort.
What Causes Corneal Abrasion?
Any object that comes in direct contact with the front of your eyes is likely to scratch your cornea. Let’s look at more scenarios that can cause corneal abrasion:
- Poking your eyes with fingers, pen, or even makeup brush.
- Dust, dirt, ash, or any foreign material that gets trapped in your eyes.
- Any chemical
- Using damaged, dirty, or ill-fitted contact lenses
- Wearing contact lenses while sleeping or for an extended period
- Rubbing your eyes too hard
- Playing sports or involve in any high-risk activity without wearing any protective eyewear
Signs & Symptoms of a Scratched Cornea
The cornea is one of the sensitive parts, and even a minute scratch can be extremely painful and cause a great deal of uneasiness. The signs and symptoms of corneal abrasion include:
- Redness of the eyes
- Watery eyes
- Blurry vision
- Light sensitivity
The Treatment for Corneal Abrasion
If you experience any of these symptoms, you should visit the Best cornea specialist in India immediately. They can diagnose the problem and provide you with the proper treatment. The treatment will depend on the extent to which your cornea is injured. Usually, if it is a minor scratch, it will heal in 2-3 days, but if it is severe, it will take longer.
The treatment options provided by the eye doctor will include:
- Minor abrasions can be cured with non-preserved lubricating eye drops to keep your eyes moist while the eyes’ natural healing process occurs.
- Antibiotic eye drops are used for superficial abrasions to prevent infection during the healing process.
- Antibiotic ointment is given to other abrasions. The ointment stays longer on the eyes, decreasing the inflammation. It also relieves pain and sensitivity to light.
- Eye patches are given to help you stop blinking, which make the injury even worse.
Depending on the severity of the corneal abrasion, your eye doctor will schedule a follow-up appointment to monitor the initial treatment and effects. When appropriately treated, most corneal abrasions end in complete recovery with no permanent vision loss. But a few deeper corneal abrasions can leave a scar and in vision loss.
Simple Tips to Prevent Corneal Abrasion
Corneal abrasions are common types of injuries, and you can take a few simple steps and precautions to prevent them from happening. Consider the following tips and put them to practice:
- Put on protective eyewear
Always wear safety glasses or protective eyewear in workplaces exposed to objects, dust, or dirt that could get in your eyes. Remember to wear protective eyewear when you play sports or use power tools.
· Keep your fingernails clean & short
It is the most straightforward step you can take that can go a long way in protecting your eyes. Keep your nails trimmed because most of us are prone to rubbing the eyes. Also, remember excessive rubbing of the eyes is immensely dangerous as well.
· Be cautious with your contact lenses
If you are wearing a contact lens, ensure you follow your doctor’s bits of advice to a T. Follow your doctor’s instructions regarding how long to wear it, how to wear it properly, and when to replace them.
Most corneal abrasions result in total healing with no vision loss when treated right away. But when left untreated, it can result in grievous eye problems. So, if you experience any symptoms, make sure you schedule a check-up with your eye doctor right away.