What is conjunctivitis? Also referred to as pink eye, it’s an infection of the eye. It causes the conjunctiva (the white park of your eye) to become irritated or inflamed, which will give your eye the pink pigmentation. Causes for pink eye may include a bacterial or viral infection, or allergies.
What Are Pink Eye Symptoms?
Pink eye symptoms can include a combination of:
What Causes Pink Eye?
Is pink eye contagious? Some forms of pink eye are very contagious and can spread from person to person. The two most contagious types of pink eye are caused by a bacterial or viral infection. How do you get pink eye? There are three common ways to spread and contract it, including:
- Hand-to-eye contact after coming in direct contact with an infected person’s eye secretions.
- Spreading bacteria from your own nose or sinuses to your eyes.
- Not cleaning your contact lenses correctly.
How to Prevent Spreading Pink Eye
To prevent spreading pink eye to others, follow these tips:
- Wash your hands often and avoid rubbing your eyes.
- Use a wet compress each time you wipe your face and eyes.
- Avoid using eye makeup, such as mascara. Additionally, replace your old eye makeup and never share with others.
- Clean your contact lenses regularly and replace lenses as recommended by your eye doctor.
If a cool, wet compress is still not helping within a day, you should schedule a comprehensive eye exam to help diagnose the problem and get the right treatment.
How to Treat Pink Eye
Pink eye treatment will depend on the type of conjunctivitis you have.
- Viral conjunctivitis has no specific treatment. In most cases, your body will fight it off within 7 to 14 days.
- Bacterial conjunctivitis may require antibiotic eye drops prescribed by your eye doctor, depending on how severe your pink eye symptoms are.
- Pink eye caused by allergies can be treated by avoiding the allergen. You may also use eye drops as a home treatment for pink eye.
If you think you might have pink eye, contact your neighborhood Pearle Vision EyeCare Center to schedule an eye exam. Our experienced team of eye care experts can help determine whether you have allergies vs. pink eye and get you the appropriate treatment.