How to Get Something Out of Your Eyes Safely
We have all experienced getting something in our eyes. It's so easy for an eyelash, a speck of dust or dirt to get blown into our eyes. I think you'll agree that it's an annoying experience. It can also be dangerous in some cases, especially when chemicals or pointed objects are involved. Luckily, there are several ways to get something out of your eyes.
The eyes are very delicate and sensitive, so it's important that you know how to get something out of your eyes quickly and correctly. Aside from that, it's also crucial that you become aware of how to take care of your eyesight on a daily basis.
Signs That Something is In Your Eyes
The cornea or the conjunctiva are the two parts of the eyes that are immediately affected by the introduction of foreign matter. The cornea is the clear protective covering at the front of the eye. It's where light enters the eye, and it helps concentrate this light on the retina. Meanwhile, the conjunctiva is the thin membrane that covers the white of the eye and the wet area beneath the eyelids.
You don't need to worry about dust or a foreign object in the eye moving behind the eyeball as this will never happen. However, it can scratch the cornea. While this is a minor injury, some objects might cause an infection or damage your vision.
So how will you know if something is in your eye? If you do, you'll experience some of these symptoms:
- Eyes become red or bloodshot
- Feeling that something has entered your eye
- A sensation of discomfort or pressure in the eye
- Sensitivity to light
- Urge to keep blinking
Everyday Objects That Can Enter The Eye
It's interesting to note that most of the incidents of an object getting in our eyes occur during everyday activities. Some of the most common objects that enter are our eyes are:
- Glass shards
- Dried eye discharge
Eyelashes and dried eye discharge get in our eyes due to body changes while dirt and sand particles are often blown in by the wind or due to falling debris. But sharp objects from glass or metal are usually the result of work accidents and poses the bigger risk of injuries.
Ways to Get Foreign Objects Out of the Eye
There are several steps to take if you feel there's something in your eye or you're helping someone who does have a foreign object in their eyes. Here's a useful guide on how to get something out of your eye:
1. Wash your hands. Wash your hands with soap and clean water for about 20 seconds. Rinse thoroughly to ensure all traces of soap are gone. The eyes are susceptible to infection, so you don't want to touch your eyes with a dirty hand.
2. Look in a mirror and look for the foreign object in your eye. Move your eye around to see or feel the foreign matter. Use a flashlight or move to a bright area. The light will make inspecting the eye easier.
3. Ask for help if you're having trouble pinpointing the object's location. Pull your eyelid up and look up so that the other person can check your upper eye. Pull your eyelid down and look up for the lower eye.
4. Blink. Try to blink rapidly to let tears accumulate and wash out the object. However, you should refrain from rubbing your eye.
5. For particles in the upper eyelid: Submerge the side of your face with the problematic eye in a basin of water. If no basin is available, any flat container will do. You can also use an eyecup bought from the drugstore. While submerged, open and close the eye a few times to flush out the foreign material.
If the object won't budge, one option is to pinch out the upper lid. Extend it until it stretches away from the eyeball. This action will help loosen the stubborn particle.
6. For particles trapped in the lower eyelid: Try pulling out, the lower lid to see underneath it. Once you've located the object, tap it will a moist cotton swab.
You can also try flushing it out by submerging your face in a basin of water. You can also use an eyecup. Another option would be to flush out the object by running water over the open eyelid.
7. For numerous fragments: There are also situations where you'll get a lot of tiny particles in your eyes, like when you're at the beach, and the wind blows sand in your peepers. In this case, you have no choice but to flush them out.
- First, remove any objects or particles near your eyes with a wet cloth.
- Dunk either your face or the affected side in a basin or container of water. While submerged, open and close your eyes several times.
- When dealing with children, it's best to pour a glass of warm water over the eye. Have someone hold the child's face up. Hold the eyelid open and slowly pour the water over the eye to cleanse it of the particles.
The Survival Doctor has a detailed video on how you can remove those annoying foreign objects from your eyes.
It's also important that you rinse or flush your eye for the right amount of time. Flush your eye for at least 15 minutes when trying to get the foreign matter out. Wash out your eye for about five minutes if soap or shampoo gets in and at least 20 minutes when exposed to irritants like peppers. But when exposed to corrosives like acids, rinse the eye for a minimum of 20 minutes and see a doctor immediately.
Easy Tip: How to Make A Homemade Eye Wash
Eyewashes are available in drug stores. But it's also possible to make your eye wash at home by combining salt and clean water. Here's how you brew a homemade eyewash:
1. Boil some water. Let the water thoroughly boil for about a minute. Add a teaspoon of regular table salt for every cup of water used. It's best to use purified water if available. If not, tap water will work just as well.
Salt is used to create the chemical composition of tears. The more the eye wash solution matches the natural salinity of tears, the easier it will be on the eyes.
2. Mix thoroughly. Stir the water and salt mixture (1L : 9g) with a clean spoon until the salt dissolves. Keep stirring until there are no visible salt grains at the bottom of the solution.
3. Place the solution in a container. Cover it to prevent contaminants from getting into the solution.
4. Let it cool to room temperature. You can start using it once it reaches room temperature. Never use an eye wash that's still hot or one that's ice-cold as it will cause damage to the eyes.
5. Throw the solution away after a day or two. Contaminants can still affect the mixture even after boiling.
Getting something in your eye can be irritating. It can also be dangerous if not taken care of correctly and immediately. But there are easy steps to take to get something out of your eye. Blinking rapidly or rinsing the eye with water will get rid of most eye irritants. You can also use an eye wash or running water to flush out the foreign object. Just try to get that object out of your eye as soon as possible.
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