Symptoms A-Z

Feeling of Something in The Eye Symptom, Causes & Questions

Having the feeling like something is stuck in your eye can be quite irritating. Foreign body sensation in the eye can be caused from environmental factors like wind or pollen. An inflamed eyelid and chronic dry eyes can also cause the sensation as if something is in the eye. Read now for more information on causes and eye relief treatments.

Feeling Of Something In The Eye Symptom Checker

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8 Possible Feeling Of Something In The Eye Causes

The list below shows results from the use of our quiz by Buoy users who experienced feeling of something in the eye. This list does not constitute medical advice and may not accurately represent what you have.

Foreign body in the eye

Foreign bodies like windblown grit, wood or masonry, or flecks of metal can land in the eye and get stuck there, causing extreme discomfort.

Rarity: Uncommon

Top Symptoms: feeling of something in the eye

Symptoms that always occur with foreign body in the eye: feeling of something in the eye

Urgency: In-person visit

Inflamed eyelid (blepharitis)

Inflamed eyelid, or blepharitis, is a bacterial infection of the skin at the base of the eyelashes.

If the oil glands around the eyelashes become clogged, normal skin bacteria will multiply in the oil and cause infection. The glands can become blocked due to dandruff of the scalp and eyebrows; allergies to eye makeup or contact lens solution; or eyelash mites or lice.

Symptoms include red, swollen, painful eyelids; oily, dandruff-like flakes of skin at the base of the eyelashes; and eyelashes that grow abnormally or fall out.

If the symptoms do not clear with hygiene, see a medical provider. Blepharitis can become chronic and lead to infections of the eyelids and cornea; dry eyes which cannot take contact lenses; and scarring and deformity of the eyelids.

Diagnosis is made through physical examination of the eyelids, under magnification and through skin swab of the eyelashes.

Treatment includes warm compresses and careful washing of the eyelids; antibiotics in pill or cream form; steroid eyedrops; and treatment for any underlying condition such as dandruff or rosacea.

Rarity: Common

Top Symptoms: eye itch, sensitivity to light, eye redness, feeling of something in the eye, dry eyes

Symptoms that never occur with inflamed eyelid (blepharitis): severe eye pain

Urgency: Self-treatment

Chronically dry eyes

Chronically dry eyes are a relatively common condition, especially in older adults, that can be very uncomfortable and lead to damage of the surface of the eye. They are caused by a decrease in the tear production of the eye or an increase in tear evaporation. Risk factors inc...

Viral conjunctivitis

Viral conjunctivitis, or pinkeye, is an inflammation of the clear membranes covering the eye. It causes redness, pain, and irritation of one or both eyes.

The viral form of conjunctivitis is very contagious because it is caused by the same viruses that cause influenza or the common cold. It is spread when an infected person coughs or sneezes, and then someone else inhales the virus from the droplets in the air.

Symptoms include a gritty, burning feeling in the eye; discharge or tears; swelling; itching; pink discoloration due to dilated blood vessels; and sensitivity to light.

Diagnosis is made through patient history, physical examination, and careful eye examination. Smears may be taken from the eye for testing.

Antibiotics only work against bacteria and cannot help against a viral illness, and so antibiotic eyedrops are not effective against viral conjunctivitis. Treatment includes easing the symptoms with eyedrops and warm or cool compresses over the eyes until the illness has run its course, which takes two to three weeks.

Rarity: Common

Top Symptoms: eye redness, eye itch, sensitivity to light, feeling of something in the eye, watery eye discharge

Symptoms that always occur with viral conjunctivitis: eye redness

Urgency: Self-treatment

Feeling Of Something In The Eye Symptom Checker

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Bacterial conjunctivitis

Bacterial conjunctivitis, or pinkeye, is an inflammation of the clear membranes covering the eye. It causes redness, pain, and irritation of one or both eyes.

Staphylococcus or streptococcus bacteria are often involved, and anything that brings bacteria to the eye can cause conjunctivitis. Touching the eyes with unwashed hands; sharing eye makeup, washcloths, or towels; or improperly cleaning contact lenses are common causes. The same bacteria that cause the sexually transmitted diseases chlamydia and gonorrhea can also cause conjunctivitis.

Most susceptible are children, but anyone can be affected.

Symptoms include a gritty, burning feeling in the eye; discharge or tears; swelling; itching; pink discoloration due to dilated blood vessels; and sensitivity to light.

Diagnosis is made through patient history, physical examination, and careful eye examination. Smears may be taken from the eye for testing.

Treatment involves a course of antibiotic eyedrops. It is important to use all of the drops as prescribed, even when the infection seems to improve. Warm compresses over the eyes can help ease the discomfort.

Rarity: Common

Top Symptoms: sore throat, eye redness, eye itch, watery eye discharge, eye redness

Symptoms that always occur with bacterial conjunctivitis: eye redness

Urgency: Primary care doctor

Contact lens-related eye infection

Millions of people wear contact lens daily without issue; however, there is a risk of infection. Often, infection is avoidable by keeping lenses clean.

Rarity: Rare

Top Symptoms: eye redness, wateriness in both eyes, sensitivity to light, constant eye redness, eye redness

Symptoms that always occur with contact lens-related eye infection: eye redness, constant eye redness

Urgency: In-person visit

Burst blood vessel in the eye from wearing contacts

A burst blood vessel in the eye can happen from wearing contacts because incompatibility of the lens with the eye. This could cause a surface vein to pop.

Rarity: Rare

Top Symptoms: eye redness, bright red eyes

Symptoms that always occur with burst blood vessel in the eye from wearing contacts: eye redness

Urgency: Wait and watch

Stye and chalazion

A stye (or hordeolum) is an infection in the upper or lower eyelid. There are three glands around the eye and one of them is infected.

Rarity: Common

Top Symptoms: swelling of one eyelid, redness around the eye, feeling of something in the eye, eyelid lump, eyelid pain

Symptoms that always occur with stye and chalazion: swelling of one eyelid

Symptoms that never occur with stye and chalazion: fever

Urgency: Self-treatment

Questions Your Doctor May Ask About Feeling Of Something In The Eye

To diagnose this condition, your doctor would likely ask the following questions:

  • Does light bother your eyes more than usual?
  • Have you ever been diagnosed with a psychiatric issue, such as depression, bipolar, schizophrenia, or anxiety disorder?
  • Do you have dry eyes?
  • Do your eyelids feel sticky?

The above questions are also covered by our A.I. Health Assistant.

If you've answered yes to one or more of these questions

Take a quiz to find out what might be causing your feeling of something in the eye

Feeling Of Something In The Eye Symptom Checker Statistics

People who have experienced feeling of something in the eye have also experienced:

  • 13% Eye Pain
  • 4% Eye Itch
  • 4% Headache

People who have experienced feeling of something in the eye were most often matched with:

  • 71% Foreign Body In The Eye
  • 14% Inflamed Eyelid (Blepharitis)
  • 14% Chronically Dry Eyes

Source: Aggregated and anonymized results from visits to the Buoy AI health assistant (check it out by clicking on “Take Quiz”).

Feeling Of Something In The Eye Symptom Checker

Take a quiz to find out what might be causing your feeling of something in the eye

Disclaimer: The article does not replace an evaluation by a physician. Information on this page is provided as an information resource only, and is not to be used or relied on for any diagnostic or treatment purposes.