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How to Safely Get an Eyelash Out of Your Eye

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A woman rubbing her eye to dislodge the eyelash on her eye.

If you’ve ever felt like there’s something in your eye and you start to tear up with discomfort, don’t panic—it’s probably just an eyelash. Even though it can feel like dry eyes or other eye problems, eyelashes are fortunately easy to remove as long as you’re careful. 

To safely remove an eyelash from your eye, start by trying to blink it out. If this doesn’t work, wash your hands and try using lukewarm water or eye drops to rinse it clear. If the eyelash is persistent, grab a clean cotton swab and try to gently brush it away.

How to Tell if There’s an Eyelash in Your Eye

It’s not fun: that irritating feeling of something stuck in your eye, only to discover it’s a pesky eyelash. While usually harmless, it can be incredibly uncomfortable and disruptive. There are some signs you can keep an eye out for:

  • A scratchy sensation when you blink
  • Tearing
  • Visible redness in the area
  • Mild light sensitivity
  • Blurry vision

If you’re experiencing these symptoms, it’s time to head to a mirror! You likely have an eyelash stuck in your eye.

Safely Removing an Eyelash from Your Eye

Before you go picking at your eye, slow down for a moment. Stand in front of your mirror and try to carefully examine your eye. Look for the eyelash along the edge of your eyelids, on the whites of your eyes, or near your lash line.

If you can see it, it’s time to try to get it out. There are a few steps to safely remove it:

  1. Try to blink it out. Blink repeatedly while “looking” in different directions. Moving the eyeball may help dislodge the lash, and your tears should help remove it from your eye.
  2. If blinking doesn’t help, immediately wash your hands before proceeding. This helps to avoid the transmission of harmful bacteria and other contaminants.
  3. Try rinsing your eye with lukewarm water to dislodge it. Make sure it isn’t too hot! It’s often easiest to lower your face into your cupped hands, rather than trying to bring the water up to your eye.
  4. If it won’t come clear with water, it’s time to grab a clean cotton swab. Lightly dampen the swab, then try to gently brush the eyelash away from your eye. Avoid poking, prodding, or rubbing—this can damage your eye if you aren’t careful, and won’t feel good either way.

Remember, never rub or scratch your eye! It can scratch the cornea or cause further problems, so remember to be gentle. Your eyes are extremely sensitive and can easily be damaged if you aren’t being careful.

A man rinsing his eyes to dislodge the eyelash on his eye.

Is It Bad to Have an Eyelash in Your Eye?

While it’s uncomfortable, having an eyelash in your eye isn’t usually harmful. They’re fairly small and soft and can’t do too much if you remove one quickly. However, if you ignore it, it can potentially scratch your eye’s surface, which can lead to further problems down the line.

However, you can accidentally damage your eye if you use methods that are too aggressive. The human eye is a sensitive organ, so make sure you never:

  • Use tweezers or any other sharp object near your eye
  • Rub your eye vigorously to dislodge the eyelash
  • Use cotton balls, tissues, or any other large foreign object that could come apart

These methods can damage your eye, and this can be a much more serious problem than an eyelash. Remember: you only get one pair of eyes, so don’t put them at risk!

When to Visit the Optometrist

Sometimes, what feels like an eyelash in your eye could be something more serious. That scratching, irritating sensation often associated with a stuck eyelash can often be an indicator that something more serious is occurring.

There are a few signs to keep an eye out for:

  • Pain or any noticeable discomfort or irritation
  • Significant redness
  • Swelling
  • Pus or visible discharge
  • Sudden changes in your vision
  • Flashing lights
  • Double vision

If you notice any of these symptoms, immediately visit your optometrist or a healthcare professional. These symptoms are an indicator of significant inflammation and serious eye conditions like:

  • Conjunctivitis (pink eye)
  • Eye infections
  • Corneal abrasions
  • Foreign bodies that are more dangerous than an eyelash
  • Keratitis (corneal inflammation)

These conditions can cause significant long-term problems if you don’t receive appropriate treatment. They can lead to vision problems, discomfort, and more, so don’t self-diagnose—reach out to a professional team to get a proper diagnosis.

Come Visit Us at Total Vision Campbell

At Total Vision Campbell, our team is here to prioritize your health and comfort. While an eyelash in your eye can be irritating, the symptoms it causes can often be misleading. Don’t put your eyes in jeopardy—book an appointment with our team, and let’s work together to find the culprit!

Written by Total Vision

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