What to do About Pink EyeWednesday, June 15th, 2016, 3:40 am
Pink eye (or conjunctivitis) is a common eye condition that typically affects grade school-aged children. It’s also prevalent among teachers and day care works due to their close contact with children in a classroom environment. That being said, pink eye can affect anyone. A highly contagious infection, pink eye develops when the thin, clear covering of the white of the eye and the inside of the eyelid are inflamed.
Symptoms and Treatment
Conjunctivitis is termed “pink eye” because the eye takes on a pink appearance. There are three types of conjunctivitis, each with their own set of symptoms.
- When you have bacterial conjunctivitis, you develop a sticky, yellow-ish discharge in the corner of your eye. Sometimes it can be thick enough to cause your eye to stick shut. The best way to prevent the spread of bacterial conjunctivitis is by avoiding touching your eye and then other items. To treat this type of pink eye, your doctor will prescribe an ointment or prescription eye drops to clear it up.
- Viral conjunctivitis occurs when your eyes are watery and you have an increased sensitivity to light. You can spread viral conjunctivitis by simply coughing or sneezing. If you have viral conjunctivitis, the only option is to let it run its course. It will begin to clear up after a few days. To find relief in the meantime, apply a cool, damp washcloth to your eyes several times throughout the day. Just be sure nobody else uses the same cloth.
- If you have watery or itchy eyes, you likely have allergic conjunctivitis. This type of pink eye is also usually accompanied by runny nose and congestion, but it is not contagious. A good treatment for allergic conjunctivitis is over-the-counter allergy medications. Talk to your doctor to determine the one that’s right for you.
To minimize your risk of contracting pink eye:
- Wash your hands regularly and avoid touching your eyes
- Don’t share pillows or towels
- Combat the stress that can compromise your immune system by getting enough sleep and eating right
For more information about preventing and treating conjunctivitis, or to schedule an appointment, please complete our convenient online contact form. For locations, click here to find a center near you.
Category: Eye Care