The conjunctiva is the thin clear tissue that lies over the white part of the eye and lines the inside of the eyelid. Conjunctivitis, commonly known as Pinkeye, is an inflammation and swelling of the conjunctiva because:
- Bacterial, viral infection.
- Allergies, chemical caused by irritants like air pollution, chlorine in swimming pools, and exposure to noxious chemicals.
- A foreign body in the eye.
The disease transmits by:
- Objects, which have been exposed to the infected persons eye secretions.
- Sneezing or coughing.
- Hand shake.
- Contaminated surfaces and items (e.g. door handle).
- Sharing of towels,pillowcases,cosmetics
- Public swimming pools.
- Swollen Conjunctiva.
- Watery or mucus discharge.
- Itchy eyes.
- Foreign body sensation.
- Blurred vision.
- Puffy eyelids.
- Pink or red color in the white part of the eye.
- A topical antihistamine/decongestant eye drop may help to relieve the irritation of viral conjunctivitis especially for severe itching.
- Cold compresses.
- Lubricants for comfort.
- This treatment may reduce the symptoms but does not shorten the course of the infection.
- Antibiotic or steroid eye drops/ointments are not recommended.
- Clean tables, door handles, chairs, bathrooms, etc., with Clorox diluted with water.
- Contact lens wearers should remove lens wear until signs and symptoms resolve.
- Avoid touching or rubbing your eyes. This can worsen the condition or spread it to your other eye.
- Wash any discharge from around your eye(s) several times.
- Avoid contact with infants, elderly persons, individuals taking immunosuppressive or chemotherapeutic agents, and immunocompromised patients
- Do not share personal items, such as pillows, washcloths, towels, eye drops, eye or face makeup, contact lenses, contact lens storage cases, or eyeglasses.
- Wash your hands often with soap and warm water. Wash them especially well before and after cleaning, or applying eye drops or ointment to your infected eye.
Your doctor may advice not go to work or school for several days or until symptoms have been resolved.
Note: Practicing good hygiene is the best way to control the spread of conjunctivitis