As horrifying as a black eye can look, it is usually nothing that will cause lasting or serious damage. A black eye is technically a hemorrhage around the eye; the blood that's underneath the skin shows through as a purplish color.
There are many diseases and conditions that can cause a black eye, but a true "shiner" is typically caused by some trauma to the eye. Anyone with a black eye should see a doctor to rule out damage to the eye itself. If you have any vision problems, it is especially important to get to the doctor immediately.
Once you've been checked out, head over to next page to discover some ways to care for your black eye.