A black eye is bruising and swelling around your eye, usually caused by a blow to the area, such as a punch or fall. It should get better within 2 to 3 weeks.

How to ease a black eye yourself

See a GP if you have a black eye and:

  • you have severe pain or swelling
  • you have a headache that doesn’t go away, or blurry vision
  • the area around your eye is warm or leaking pus
  • your temperature is very high, or you feel hot and shivery
  • it doesn’t go away within 3 weeks

Ask for an urgent appointment if you have a black eye and:

  • you’re taking blood-thinning medication (such as warfarin)
  • you have a bleeding disorder (such as haemophilia)