What’s causing my burning eyes, and what should I do?
Eye pain is a very general term that people use to describe symptoms they feel in, on, around, or behind their eyes. The pain may be felt in just one eye or both eyes. Sometimes it’s entirely obvious what’s causing the problem – such as an injury or a torn contact lens. But other times, figuring out the root of the problem can be more challenging. Contact Lakeline Vision Source to book an urgenteye exam in Cedar Park, Texas – we’ll diagnose your problem and provide treatment to bring relief.
Pinpoint your pain
The eye doctor diagnoses the problem and provides treatment to soothe your eye pain; it helps if you can identify exactly what part of the eye hurts, for example:
- Cornea: the clear outer surface of your eye
- Sclera: the whites of your eyes
- Conjunctiva: the thin membrane that coats your sclera and inner eyelid
- Iris: colored section of your eye, with the pupil in the center
- Orbit: eye socket; the bony depression where your eye and its muscles are located
- Extraocular muscles: responsible for rotating your eye
- Eyelids: external covering over your eyes that protect and spread lubrication
Common causes of eye pain
The following is a review of the most typical causes of eye pain that we treat in our Cedar Park, Texas , eye clinic:
- Conjunctivitis: also known as pink eye, this is an eye infection that leads to swelling of the conjunctiva. Classic symptoms include bloodshot eyes, oozing discharge, itchiness, burning eyes, and the feeling that you need to keep rubbing your eyes. When it is a bacterial infection, your eye doctor will prescribe antibiotic eye drops or ointment as treatment.
- Blepharitis: an infection or inflammation of the eyelid that is often irritating and is a common cause of dry eye symptoms
- Corneal abrasions: these are the same as corneal scratches, which can be quite painful. Vigorous rubbing of your eyes can actually cause corneal abrasions, as well as any foreign object contacting your delicate eye surface. Generally, corneal scratches heal within a few days without complications.
- Corneal infections (keratitis): a bacterial or viral infection can cause your cornea to become infected or inflamed. Improper hygiene of contact lenses is the usual cause of corneal infections.
- Foreign bodies: when any object gets stuck in your eye, even a speck of dirt, it can irritate it. Flushing out the item will usually bring relief within a short period.
- Dry eyes: this type of eye pain usually starts more gradually than a corneal scratch or foreign object and often causes stinging or burning eyes. Lubricating eye drops are often enough to restore comfort.
- Migraine headaches: the pain is usually concentrated behind only one eye and it’s often accompanied by pain elsewhere on the same side of your head
- Sinus infection: the symptoms are typically more mild than pain from a migraine
- Stye: this is an inflamed spot on the edge of your eyelid, which generally goes away after a few days – especially if you apply warm compresses to your eyelid several times a day
- Optic neuropathy: the pain caused by this condition is usually severe, and immediate medical attention is required. When left untreated, it can cause permanent vision loss. Usually, the eye pain is accompanied by reduced visual acuity and a dimming of your color vision. Moving your eyes will make the pain worse.
When to see an eye doctor for eye pain
Certain cases require emergency medical care, while other types of eye pain require a visit to your eye doctor – but they are not as urgent.
Emergency eye care is needed when:
- Eye pain is accompanied by fever, headache, and unusual light sensitivity
- You experience sudden vision changes
- You also experience vomiting or nausea
- The pain is triggered by a foreign object or chemical splashed in your eye
- You suddenly see halos around lights
- There is inflammation in or around your eyes
- It’s difficult to move your eye or keep it open
- Blood or pus is coming out from your eyes
Don’t take chances with your vision!
Even if you don’t have any of the above eye emergency symptoms, you should still regard any eye pain as a reason to visit your eye doctor. To keep your vision safe for as long as possible, schedule an eye exam with our eye doctor near you in Cedar Park, Texas , as soon as possible.
At Lakeline Vision Source, we put your family's needs first. Talk to us about how we can help you maintain healthy vision. Call us today: 512-918-3937 or book an appointment online to see one of our Cedar Park eye doctors.
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