Common types of eye injuries are blunt trauma, penetrating injuries, and radiation injury from sunlight.
Blunt trauma occurs when something hits you in the eye. Blunt trauma causes most sports-related eye injuries. Some serious examples are an orbital blowout fracture (a broken bone under the eyeball), a ruptured globe (broken eyeball), and a detached retina. Bruising of the eye and eyelid (“black eye”) looks bad but usually is a less serious injury.
Penetrating injuries occur when something cuts into your eye. These injuries are not very common. You can get a penetrating injury if your eyeglasses break while you are wearing them or if another person's finger scratches you in the eye. Injuries range from mild to deep cuts. Fishing hooks have caused penetrating eye injuries.
Radiation injuries are caused by exposure to ultraviolet light from the sun. These injuries are most common in sports such as snow skiing and water skiing, and other water sports.
A foreign body is an object in your eye that shouldn’t be there, such as a speck of dust, wood chip, metal shaving, insect or piece of glass. The common places to find a foreign body are under the eyelid or on the surface of your eye.
Those most at risk are trades people such as labourers, woodcutters, fitters and turners, and boilermakers. Don’t try to remove a foreign body yourself. Go straight to your doctor or the nearest hospital emergency department for help.
A corneal abrasion is a cut or scratch on the cornea (the clear, front portion of the eye). A corneal abrasion usually occurs quickly before the eye’s defense system can properly engage, resulting in pain, light sensitivity and tearing with a possibility of infection.
In the event of a eye injury, see a doctor as soon as possible as there are types of fungi and bacteria that can pass into your eye and cause serious damage within hours.
An inflammation or infection of the conjunctiva, the thin transparent layer of tissue that lines the inner surface of the eyelid and covers the white part of the eye.
A corneal ulcer is an open sore on the cornea of the eye. It's usually due to an infection affecting the clear front surface of the eye, resulting in inflammation of the cornea (keratitis). A corneal ulcer typically causes a painful red eye, with mild to severe eye discharge and reduced vision.