It’s itchy and can cause panic, but pink eye is relatively easy to get rid of.
Conjunctivitis, or pink eye, is something that’s incredibly easy to contract. With kids back at school, the bacterial version of this common eye irritant is ready to set up camp in many homes, something that can cause worried parents to lose sleep.
What is it? According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), pink eye comes in many different forms. It’s an irritation of the clear tissue that sits inside your eyelid and on the white part of you eyeball, and it can be caused by allergens in the environment like pollen, irritants like chlorine, as well as bacteria and viruses.
The pink eye that every one runs away from in the playground is usually the bacterial type. It’s one of the leading causes of childhood absences from school and it can kind of gross. This type is caused by Staphylococcus aureus, Streptococcus pneumoniae, Haemophilus species, and less commonly, Chlamydia trachomatis.
It’s identified by red or swollen eyes, increased tears, white, yellow or green discharge and itchiness, among other symptoms.
The best way to treat this contagious form of pink eye is to visit your doctor who may prescribe antibiotic eye drops, to reduce the chances of having complications and help you fight it off faster. If you apply these eye drops, the redness should go away within a few days.
But you may have another type of pink eye, and if it’s viral, you likely simply have to wait for it to clear. For redness caused by allergens, visit your pharmacy for allergy-fighting eye drops.
Always visit a doctor to seek a professional opinion and to keep your eyes safe.
Photo credits: vchal/Bigstock