Conjunctivitis: Symptoms, Causes and Treatment
Pink eye, medically referred to as conjunctivitis, is the inflammation of the conjunctiva. The white part of the eye becomes light pinkish to reddish, and the eyelids become droopy.By Admin | 16 October 2023
What is conjunctivitis?
Pink eye, medically referred to as conjunctivitis, is the inflammation of the conjunctiva. Conjunctiva is the thin and transparent issue that covers the white part of the eye and lines the inner surface of the eyelids. The white part of the eye becomes light pinkish to reddish, and the eyelids become droopy.
Types of Conjunctivitis and their Causes and Symptoms
There are three types of conjunctivitis: allergic, infectious, and chemical.
Allergic Conjunctivitis: This has two different types
- Allergic: This happens when people are already allergic to certain substances. When they come in contact with it, it triggers an allergic reaction in their eyes.
- Giant papillary: This occurs when there is a presence of a foreign entity for a longer period of time. It usually occurs to those who wear contact lenses without replacing them frequently.
- There is a watery discharge from the eyes.
- There is a mild redness in the eyes.
Infectious Conjunctivitis: There are three different types.
- Bacterial Conjunctivitis: This is caused by bacteria that reside in our own respiratory system. People using makeup need to be extra careful, as sharing or using contaminated makeup is a leading cause of bacterial conjunctivitis.
- Viral Conjunctivitis: This is the most commonly occurring conjunctivitis. These are mostly caused by viruses that are attached to the common cold. This mostly occurs when one is in the vicinity of someone who sneezes or coughs and has an upper respiratory infection. This is mostly associated with the term pink eye.
- Ophthalmia Conjunctivitis: This conjunctivitis occurs in newborn babies and, if not treated immediately, could lead to permanent eye damage. This occurs when an infant is exposed to an infection caused by gonorrhoea or chlamydia. These are sexually transmitted diseases.
- Moderate redness in the eyes.
- Yellow or green discharge
- People who wear contact lenses are at risk of developing a corneal ulcer.
- Viral Conjunctivitis is painful, whereas bacterial conjunctivitis is less painful.
Chemical Conjunctivitis: This is caused by particles in air pollution and chlorine in swimming pools.
There are multiple steps through which the doctor will diagnose
- The doctor will check the patient’s health history.
- Visual acuity tests will be performed.
- A stick will be used to collect secretions from the eye for testing.
Treatment is dependent on the type of conjunctivitis a person has.
- Allergic Conjunctivitis: The foremost thing to do is to stay away from the irritant or remove it. In mild cases, artificial tears are used to bring relief. For severe cases, anti-inflammatory medications and antihistamines are prescribed. But if it is persistent, topical eyedrops are used.
- Infectious Conjunctivitis: Antibiotic eye drops are used to treat bacterial conjunctivitis. These drops are of no use for viral conjunctivitis. As the common cold lasts for a few days, this too will last for the same number of days.
- Chemical Conjunctivitis: The eyes are washed with saline. In some cases, topical steroids are used.
What should one do to prevent it?
Practicing good hygiene, washing your hands, and not touching your eyes are the preventive measures that one can follow.
What preventive measures can one take after the person is diagnosed?
- Do not touch your eyes.
- Wash your hands.
- Do not wear your lenses. Instead, use glasses.
- Use eyedrops as prescribed by the doctor.
- Use your own towel, washcloth, and pillow. Do not share them with others.
At Aadicura Superspeciality Hospital, patients will always be prioritised over everything else. They will always find “Specialists that care” by their side. The best of diagnosis and treatments will be provided to all under the expert guidance of specialist doctors and medical staff.