Flushing the eyes with water is the preferred treatment to remove foreign objects or chemical contamination from the eyes.
Time Required: 20 minutes
- Stay Safe. If you are not the victim, practice universal precautions and wear personal protective equipment if available.
- If an eyewash station is available, use it. If not, a garden hose held vertically so the water is flowing straight up is ideal. If a garden hose is not available, eyes can be flushed under the facet in the kitchen or bathroom sink.
- Keep the eyes open at all times. Flushing the eyes with them closed does not do anything.
- Always flush both eyes to avoid washing the object or contamination to the unaffected eye. If using a sink facet, have the victim hold his or her head so that the affected eye is lower than the unaffected eye.
- Flush both eyes for at least 20 minutes.
- If there is still irritation or vision loss after flushing the eyes, take the victim to medical treatment.
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