Persistent eye discomfort
Severe eye pain can be a sign of anything from dry eye or conjunctivitis (pinkeye) to glaucoma. Dry eye and pinkeye both cause persistent discomfort, and are generally easily treatable. That said, you should seek out medical attention for either condition. Glaucoma symptoms include blurred vision, changes in your peripheral vision, or a tunnel vision that diminishes over time. If any of these symptoms persist despite treatment efforts, you should visit an emergency room immediately. Less severe instances of all three conditions can be treated by your primary care physician once you’ve been seen in an emergency room—so only go if it’s truly urgent.
Red eyes don’t necessarily mean you have an eye infection, but it is a good reason to visit your optometrist. An optometrist will examine your eyes carefully and offer options for alleviating redness, as well as answer any questions you might have about what’s causing your symptoms. And yes, many viruses can cause conjunctivitis — an inflammation of the thin membrane that lines your eyelids and covers your white part of your eye (sclera). If swelling around your eyes is extreme or accompanied by other symptoms such as fever, headache or a discharge from one or both eyes, you may be suffering from pink eye — also known as conjunctivitis.
If you are experiencing extreme pain, sensitivity to light or blurred vision, you should call an eye doctor right away. These symptoms can signal serious problems with your cornea, retina or lens that require immediate medical attention. Headache: Though there are a number of causes for severe headaches (like stress, medications and sinus infections), it’s always best to visit a neurologist if you experience sudden intense head pain that is unlike anything you’ve felt before. Pregnancy complications: If you think you may be pregnant and have been having abdominal cramps accompanied by vaginal bleeding and/or contractions, it is very important that you visit an emergency room immediately.