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  • How should I handle my scratched eye?


    I scratched my eye while taking out a contact lens. My thumbnail was longer than I expected, and somehow I scratched the white part of my eyeball. Of course, it is bloodshot now, and a little irritating. I have not put another contact lens in, and was not planning on doing so. I was wondering if I should put a new contact in—as a sort of protection from bacteria—or should I wear a patch? 


    Probably by the time you read this, your eye has healed as the eye surface heals quickly. To answer your question, I would not recommend putting in a new contact lens until your eye surface heals. Contact lenses may relieve the pain, but may also trap germs and risk infection. Placing a patch would probably help, but if you have minimal pain, I would do nothing. If you develop pain, increasing redness, discharge or decreased vision, you should see an ophthalmologist immediately as you could have an infection or other related problem.

    This question was originally answered on Dec. 3, 2010.