What is a black eye and How to Treat it

warm-compress-black-eye-rev-2What is a black eye and How to Treat it?

A black eye, sometimes called shiner or periorbital hematoma, occurs when fluids accumulate in the tissues encircling the eye after an injury near the eye. It is a bruising that commonly occurs around the eye. The black eye is due to bleeding beneath the skin and around the eye. Similar bruises in other parts of the body also lead to discoloration and are caused by broken blood vessels under the surfaced of the skin due to blunt force trauma, often not penetrating injury. Sometimes a black eye can become worst if it is not treated affected several months. This can indicate more extensive damage, even a skull fracture. This is particularly important if the area around both eyes is bruised (which has been referred to as raccoon eyes) which can be there if there has been a prior injury to the head.Black_Eye_01

Although a black eye injuries are not serious, the bleeding that occurs within the eye, hyphema) is severe and can affect vision and cause damage to the cornea, vision loss and increased eye pressure, glaucoma. In some cases, the unusually high pressure inside the eyeball (ocular hypertension) can also occur.

A blunt force trauma to the eye socket or areas around it can damage small blood vessels beneath the skin and cause them to leak leading to the development of a black eye or shiner.

What causes Black Eyes

Black eyes normally are the result of an accident in which an object strikes the area surrounding the eyes. These accidents occur for many reasons, including sports to walking into something by mistake.

Another condition often accompanies a black eye is the bright red appearance in the white of the eye (sclera). This is called a subconjunctival hemorrhage even though it may look severe, it is typically not serious and resolves without the need for treatment within a few weeks.

Other things can lead to black eyes including cosmetic eye surgery, nasal surgery or sinus infections. Even dental work and tooth infection can lead to black eyes.
In more serious cases of blacks eyes, there may be a severe sinus infection (or cellulitis) around the eye and skull fracture.

Treatment for a black eye

In the majority of cases, a black eye is like any other bruise and is not cause for extreme concern.

Although, it is always imperative to have an eye doctor examine a black eye before trying to treat it on your own. To determine the severity of a black eye, evaluate yourself for the following symptoms, and if any them are present, seek immediate medical treatment.

  • Dizziness, loss of consciousness
  • Vomiting
  • Severe Pain
  • Bruising around both eyes,
  • Persistent headache
  • Signs of infection, such as heat, redness, pus or fever.
  • Behavior changes or lethargy
  • Excessive swelling or swelling that not caused by an injury
  • Changes in vision or blurry, double vision or loss of vision.
  • Blood flow from the ears or nose
  • Inability to move the eye.

If you are caring for a minor black eye at home, you can apply a cold compress as soon as you can. A bag of frozen peas can work better than ice cubes because it can confirm to the shape of the face. You may also use a child metal spoon in the refrigerator; the tenderly apply the back of the spoon to various parts of the bruised area.

Never use raw meat to a black as this poses is a significant risk of infection.

Cold compresses can be implemented for about 15 to 30 minutes at a time and reapplied every hour. This will help restore blood vessels and limit the amount of swelling. For minor pain, you can apply over the counter pain pills such as Advil or Tylenol. Make sure you avoid aspirin since it is a blood thinner, and may make your black eye look worst.

How to care for your black eye.

A black will usually disappear within a few weeks. During the healing period, it is important to protect the eye from getting further damage. You should try to avoid activities that will cause further harm.

As your black eye heal, you will notice that it will change colors, shades of purple, green, yellow and not uncommon.

There is no cure to get rid of a black eye overnight, here are some things that can help speed up the healing process so your eye can look and feel better.

Start with a cold frozen bag, or chilled spoon or some other ice packs to lower the temperature of the region surrounding the eye as soon as possible after the injury.

Switch to warm, After a day or two of cold packs, you should apply warm (not hot) packs to increase the blood flow and area to enable healing.

Gently massage the area surrounding the bruise (not the black eye itself) in the days after the flowing the injury.

Snack on tropical fruit for a mixture of enzymes and reduce inflammation, and speed up healing.

Vitamin C can do more to reduce how easily you bruise (by strengthening blood vessels reducing their tendency to leak after blunt trauma)

Bilberry extract – similar to blueberry and cranberry, bilberry contains antioxidants that can reduce or eradicate bruising by increasing the effectiveness of vitamin C
How to prevent a Black Eye

The best way to decrease the risk of getting a black eye will be to ear safety glasses, or sports eyewear, or protective headgear that incorporates a face shield when you are involved in possibly hazardous activities, incorporating playing sports.

Earning a seatbelt also is important and significant the risk of black eyes from minor auto accidents.


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