GRAPHIC: Floyd County man finds tick in his eye

Published: Jul. 15, 2019 at 1:03 PM EDT
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One Floyd County man is recovering after finding a tick in his eyeball.

Chris Prater works for a local electric company. Before he starts each day, he told WYMT, he always sprays himself with repellent.

"Where ticks are so bad this year, we always try to spray down really good," said Prater.

However, one tick made its home in an unusual place.

Prater noticed something was wrong after leaving a job site in Johnson County, where his crew cut a tree from some power lines.

"I noticed I just started having irritation in my eye," recalled Prater.

He asked the office safety manager to take a look at it. But after flushing his eye multiple times, the spot did not budge.

"The thing of it is, I really didn't want to go to the doctor. I figured if it was something it would come out on its own," Prater said.

As the irritation continued, he decided to see a local optometrist.

"When the doctor finally comes in, he was looking at it. He said, 'I know what's in your eye,'" Prater recalled.

What he learned next, Prater said, he could have never imagined.

"He said, 'It's a tick.' That's when I got scared a little bit," laughed Prater. "I leaned around and looked at him and I asked him if he was joking and he said, 'No, you have a deer tick or some type of tick.' It was very little."

The doctor numbed Prater's eye. Using tweezers, he pulled the tick out.

"Once he grabbed ahold of it and pulled it off, the tick made a, like a little popping sound when it came off of my eye," recalled Prater.

The doctor sent Prater home with antibiotics and steroid drops for his eye.

Now, Prater has a piece of advice for those who find themselves outside often.

"You get a lot of kids hiking, camping, I just urge them to spray," Prater pointed out. "But you can't spray your eyes," he joked.

The safety manager posted photos of the tick in Prater's eye online. The post gained about 92,000 shares since Friday.