Home Health What is Pink eye infection? Symptoms, Causes, and Treatment 

What is Pink eye infection? Symptoms, Causes, and Treatment 

by Shah Nawaz
Pink eye, more commonly known as conjunctivitis, is a very common eye infection resulting in inflammation of the conjunctiva (inner surface of the eyelid).

What is Pink Eye Infection?

Pink eye, more commonly known as conjunctivitis, is a very common eye infection resulting in inflammation of the conjunctiva (inner surface of the eyelid). This thin membrane lines the eyelid’s inside and covers the eye’s white part. Viruses, bacteria, or allergies can cause pink eyes. Conjunctivae are thin, transparent membranes that line and protect the eyelid and eyeball. When inflamed, blood vessels in the eye become more visible and give the whites of the eyes an unusual pink or reddish tint.

Symptoms of pink eye

Pink eye can cause a variety of symptoms, including:

  • Redness in one or both eyes
  • Increased tearing
  • Thick yellow discharge that layers over eyelashes, especially after sleep
  • Green or white discharge from the eye
  • Gritty feeling in one or both eyes
  • Itchy eyes
  • Burning eyes
  • Blurred vision
  • Increased sensitivity light
  • Swollen eyelids

Types of Pink Eye

Here are the four main types of pink eye:

Viral strains

Viral pink eye is the most prevalent type of pink eye infection, accounting for as much as 90 percent of cases.

Viral pink eye is the most prevalent type of pink eye infection, accounting for as much as 90 percent of cases. Afflicted by common cold germs or Adenovirus infections, viral pink eye can spread easily via contact with infected tears or eye discharge and through close physical proximity to an affected individual.

Bacterial strains

Bacterial pink eye is caused by bacteria, such as tonsil aureus or tonsil pneumonia. Bacterial pink eye is less common than viral pink eye, but it is more likely to cause a thick, yellow, or green discharge.

Bacterial pink eye is caused by bacteria, such as tonsil aureus or tonsil pneumonia. Bacterial pink eye is less common than viral pink eye, but it is more likely to cause a thick, yellow, or green discharge.

Ophthalmia neonatorum

Ophthalmic newborn is a type of pink eye that affects newborns. Ophthalmic newborn is caused by bacteria present during labor. If left untreated promptly, Ophthalmic newborns can result in serious eye conditions including blindness.

Giant papillary

Giant papillary conjunctivitis (GPC) is a form of pink eye caused by an itchy skin reaction. While most often associated with contact lens wearers, GPC may also occur from contact with pollen or pet dander. Giant papillary conjunctivitis is not infectious.

Causes of pink eye

There are many causes, including:

  • Viruses
  • Bacteria
  • Allergies
  • Irritants
  • Newborn conjunctivitis

Viruses

Viral conjunctivitis is one of the primary causes of pink eye, caused by viruses that also cause colds and other respiratory illnesses.

Bacteria

Various bacteria, including Diarrhea flu, and throat infection pneumoniae, can cause bacterial pink eye.

Allergies

An allergic reaction to pollen, dust mites, or animal dander causes allergic pink eyes.

Irritants

Irritant pink eyes can be caused by exposure to smoke, dust, chemicals, or other irritants.

Newborn conjunctivitis

Newborn conjunctivitis (also referred to as pink eye) can develop shortly after birth due to exposure to bacteria or viruses at birth.

Treatment of pink eye

There are some different treatment of pink eye:

Viral conjunctivitis

Viral conjunctivitis generally heals itself within one or two weeks without needing specific medical intervention; however, artificial tears and cold compresses may help alleviate symptoms.

Bacterial conjunctivitis

Bacterial pink eyes are treated with antibiotic eye drops or ointment.

Allergic conjunctivitis

Allergic pink eye is treated with over-the-counter antihistamine eye drops or prescription medications such as corticosteroids.

Irritant conjunctivitis

Treating pink eye requires the removal of its source, such as chemicals. Once identified, water should be flushed through for several minutes until symptoms subside.

Newborn conjunctivitis

Newborn pink eye is usually treated with antibiotic eye drops or ointment.

How to prevent pink eye

Here are some ways to prevent pink eye:

  • Maintain a regular hand hygiene regime using soap and water to remove germs.
  • Avoid touching your eyes throughout the day.
  • Don’t share personal items such as towels, washcloths, and eye makeup.
  • Clean and germs contact lenses and contact lens cases regularly.
  • If you have Rashes, take steps to avoid your Rashes.

When to see a doctor

If your pink eye is severe, does not improve with home treatment within a few days, or if you have any symptoms, see a doctor: 

  • Eye pain 
  • Changes in vision 
  • Sensitivity to light 
  • Severe discharge from the eye 
  • Fever

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