AfterOurs Clinics - Colorado
AfterOurs Clinics - Colorado

Minor Corneal Scratches or Abrasions

Close up of one annoyed red blood and health eye of female affected by conjunctivitis or after flu, cold or allergy.

When the superficial layer on the front of the eye is damaged by any causative agent such as a foreign body, this results in corneal abrasion or scratch. Signs and symptoms of corneal abrasions include sensitivity to light, headache, gritty pain, tearing, and redness.


When any foreign body, such as dust, or particles of metal or wood enters the eye, it tears the thin film of the cornea in the front part of the eye, leading to corneal abrasions.

Minor scratches typically heal on their own within two to three days. In more severe cases, these scratches can lead to damage to the cornea, infection, or ultimately corneal ulceration. If not treated, complications can lead to serious outcomes, including visual impairment.


Following are some causes of minor corneal scratches or abrasions:

  • Metallic particle
  • Flying insects
  • Dust particles
  • Sand particles
  • Contact lenses
  • Wood fragments


Minor corneal abrasions or scratches usually heal on their own within two to three days. However, if these scratches persist for longer than this, they can lead to corneal infections, ulceration, and scarring. These corneal changes can impair your vision, so proper treatment is necessary.

There are many medications available for the treatment of these corneal abrasions, such as:

  • Over-the-counter pain medications, such as NSAIDs.
  • Anti-bacterial eye drops so bacterial infections can’t attack the scratched corneal surface.

Some remedies can also be adopted to treat corneal abrasions, such as:

  • Rinsing your eye with normal saline because it helps in the removal of foreign bodies.
  • Blinking several times to remove smaller foreign bodies.

Contact us

In case of urgent medical care assistance, AfterOurs Urgent Care offers immediate telemedicine services, where medical providers are available to offer assistance. Anyone who experiences signs and symptoms requiring urgent medical attention can simply book their appointment with AfterOurs Urgent Care to directly talk to an expert. If your medical issue is not appropriate for telemedicine, we will let you know and refer you to an in-person facility.

When to visit a doctor:
Minor corneal abrasions are very common.. If a foreign body is embedded in the cornea, do not try to pull it out by yourself – seek medical care.   Seek medical care for any eye injury that does not improve within a few days.

Treatment for minor corneal scratches or abrasions is available at AfterOurs Urgent Care.

For more information on minor corneal scratches or abrasions, see the following website: