Sharp Pain in the Eye

Almost everybody has eye pain or sore eyes at some point. Sharp eye pain in some cases improves on its own, but it can also suggest something more serious.

Your eye doctor can determine what’s going on and discover the right treatment for you.

Typical Causes of Sharp Pain in the Eye

Discomfort or pain can be triggered by a problem in the eye or structures around it, including:

  • Cornea: Clear window in the front of the eye that focuses inbound light

  • Sclera: White outside wall of the eye
  • Conjunctiva: Ultra-thin covering of the sclera and inside the eyelid
  • Iris: Colored part of the eye, with the pupil in the middle
  • Orbit: Bony cave (eye socket) where the eye and eye muscles are
  • Extraocular muscles: Muscles that rotate the eye
  • Nerves: Carry visual information from the eyes to the brain
  • Eyelids: Outside covering of the eye, which secures and continually spreads out wetness over the eyes

Eye issues can consist of:

Blepharitis: Inflammation or infection of the eyelid that causes inflammation or pain

Conjunctivitis (frequently called pink eye): Inflammation of the conjunctiva brought on by allergic reactions or infections (viral or bacterial); blood vessels in the conjunctiva ended up being engorged, and the generally white part of the eye looks red. Other symptoms normally include itching and discharge.

Corneal abrasions: A scratch on the cornea is called an abrasion. It can be very painful. The cornea is susceptible to injuries from fingers, errant tree branches, or tennis balls. With antibiotic drops and tracking by your doctor, corneal abrasions have the tendency to improve without more problems.

Corneal infections (called keratitis): Inflamed or infected cornea in some cases triggered by bacterial or viral infections; these infections are frequently related to using contact lenses overnight or using lenses that have not been effectively cleaned and sanitized.

sharp pain in eye socket

Eye Socket

Foreign bodies: Something in the eye– a little bit of dirt, plant debris, or a piece of a contact lens; these are typically just annoying, and tears or water rinse them out. If not removed, foreign bodies can cause corneal abrasions.

Glaucoma: Eye condition that usually has no early symptoms. When it comes to intense angle-closure glaucoma, however, pressure inside the eye rises all of a sudden. Symptoms consist of severe/sharp eye pain, queasiness and vomiting, headache, and worsening vision. These symptoms are an emergency and require immediate treatment to avoid blindness.

Iritis or uveitis: Inflammation inside the eye that can be brought on by trauma, infections, or autoimmune conditions. Symptoms consist of sharp pain, red eye, and, frequently, intensifying vision.

Optic neuritis: When the nerve taking a trip from the back of the eyeball into the brain becomes irritated; multiple sclerosis or other autoimmune conditions or infections are often the cause. Symptoms consist of loss of vision and often deep discomfort when looking from side to side.

Sinusitis: Infection in one of the sinus cavities, which can create pressure behind the eyes, causing eye pain on one or both sides

Stye (likewise called a hordeolum): A frequently painful infection or inflammation of the edges of the eyelid caused from the eyelash hair follicles or from oil glands; usually, a stye has a really localized, very tender area on one eyelid.

Other Symptoms

Sharp eye pain can happen on its own or together with other symptoms, such as:

  • Reduced vision
  • Release, which can be clear, or thick and colored
  • Foreign body sensation– the feeling that something remains in the eye, whether real or imagined
  • Headache
  • Light level of sensitivity
  • Queasiness or vomiting
  • Red eye or pink eye
  • Tearing
  • The eye being crusted shut after sleep due to discharge

Other symptoms together with sore eyes can be an idea to what is causing the eye pain.

Tests to Diagnose Sharp Eye Pain

See your eye doctor if you have eye pain, especially if you have decreased vision, headache, or queasiness and vomiting.

Eye care experts use a variety of tools to identify eye pain, all normally used in an office setting:

  • A slit-lamp test uses brilliant light to check out all the structures of the eye.
  • Dilating drops broaden the pupil to allow the doctor to see deep into the eye.
  • A pressure-gauging instrument (tonometer) can identify high pressures caused by glaucoma.

Treatments for Sharp Pain in the Eye

Simply as the causes of eye pain vary, so do the treatments, which target the particular reason for eye pain.

Conjunctivitis. Anti-bacterial eye drops can cure bacterial conjunctivitis. Antihistamines, through eye drops, or a tablet or syrup, can often enhance allergic conjunctivitis.

Corneal abrasions. These heal by themselves with time however frequently are alleviated with antibiotic lotions.

Glaucoma. Eye pain is alleviated urgently with eye drops and occasionally with tablets to reduce eye pressure. If these do not work, surgery may be needed.

Infections of the cornea. These might require antiviral or anti-bacterial eye drops.

Iritis. This can be alleviated with steroid, antibiotic, or antiviral eye drops.

Optic neuritis. This can be alleviated with corticosteroids.

Styes. These are generally cured by using routine warm compresses at home for a couple of days.

The only way to figure out the potential causes of sharp eye pain and to obtain the right treatment is to see a doctor. Your vision is valuable. Protect it by taking eye pain seriously.



Updated: August 13, 2016 — 4:41 am

The Author

Reyus Mammadli

Healthy lifestyle advisor. Bachelor Degree of Medical Equipment and Electronics.
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