First Aid Tips for Eye Injuries

If  this is a medical emergency, call 911 immediately.

Wills Eye Emergency Department
900 Walnut Street
Philadelphia, PA 19107
(entrance on 9th Street)

Even a minor eye injury can cause serious, lifelong eye damage. For example, bleeding within the eye, caused by an eye injury, can cause glaucoma later in life. Eye injuries can cause loss of vision, or complete loss of an eye. Listed below is information about first aid treatment in the event of an eye injury.

Specks in the Eye

  • Do not rub the eye.
  • Do not use tweezers or other sharp implements to remove (a clean cotton swab to the white of the eye or lid is ok).
  • Flush the eye with large amounts of water.
  • See a doctor if the speck does not wash out.

Cuts, Punctures, Foreign Objects in the Eye

  • Do not wash out the eye.
  • Do not try to remove a foreign object stuck in the eye.
  • Seek immediate medical attention.
  • Try to avoid rubbing the eye.

Blows to the Eye

If the individual has a red eye, complains of eye pain, will not open the lids, the eyeball looks different from the other eye or the individual has blurry vision, then seek immediate medical attention if pain continues.

Chemical Burns

  • Immediately flush the eye with cool water.
  • Open the eyelids as wide as possible.
  • Continue flushing for at least 15 minutes.
  • Seek immediate medical attention.