An eye emergency is any situation that places the health of your eyes or eyesight at immediate risk. This can include caustic chemicals (such as cleaning products) burning the eye, foreign bodies in the eye, sudden and serious infections, blunt trauma (such as taking a baseball to the eye), a contact lens that has lodged itself under your eyelid (extremely rare), sudden vision loss and other unexpected events.
Unlike the body’s other organs, your eye is always somewhat exposed and is at greater risk for these types of events. Another important element to consider is that eyesight that is lost is rarely restored. As a result of these two facts, quick action and treatment is imperative in ensuring the best potential for a positive outcome.
Quick access to an Optometrist is essential for minimizing damage caused by eye emergencies. We have three convenient locations in Calgary staffed by Optometrists with years of experience handling emergencies.
Please call us prior to travelling to our offices. Our office will provide you with appropriate next steps and ensure that you able to be promptly seen. If required, we will direct you to the nearest emergency room/hospital if the nature of your emergency requires surgical intervention.
If you find yourself with a chemical or foreign body in your eye, your first action should be to wash your eye in an attempt to remove the chemical/object. An eyewash takes about 10 minutes to perform properly.
You will need:
Standing somewhere that you won’t mind if it gets wet, tilt your head back as far as comfortable- your face should be nearly parallel to the ceiling. Use one hand to gently open the eyelids, and with the other, slowly and delicately pour your solution into the eye, stopping occasionally to blink.
Even if your eye begins to feel better right away, continue this process for at least 10 minutes. This is necessary because of how your eye and eyelid interact with each other: there is a very real probability of trace amounts of the chemical, or fine pieces of a foreign body, can get stuck in your upper or lower eyelid.
If your emergency doesn’t require surgery (think: eye gushing blood, dislodged from its socket, etc.), chances are that a visit to one of our offices will provide faster treatment than a visit to an emergency room.
Our office is equipped to properly diagnose and treat most emergencies.
In most cases, there is no wait time for emergency assessment at one of our clinics. Please call us prior to your arrival to confirm our accessibility and to receive important next steps/direction.
We have three full-service locations in Downtown Calgary, Lake Bonavista and Huntington Hills.