If you wake up one morning to find red itchy eye with sticky eyelids and difficulty to open the eyes, then probably you are suffering from pink eye infection. Pink eye or conjunctivitis, is a common eye related infection that is severely contagious and highly irritating for the person who suffers from it.
It starts with immense itching, tearing pain and a liquid discharge. Most of the times, pink eye treatment is not needed and it can be cleared in a few days without any medicines. However, pink eye that comes as a result of bacterial infection is highly contagious and needs proper medication and treatment.
Pink eye causes can be various ranging from a minor allergy to a bacterial or viral infection. It is important to find out the reason behind this ailment. It can also trigger because of some external allergies like pollutants in the air, chemicals, dust or pollens.
Symptoms of pink eye generally start with watery discharge which is sometimes thick or crust like. He eyelids appear to be sticky and the patient might find difficult to open the eyes. At times the eyes may appear red and swollen too. Most of the times a pink eye is contagious and any contact with the person suffering from it should be avoided. Here are a few medical and natural ways to treat a pink eye.
- Cleanliness and Hygiene: The first and the foremost important step before starting a pink eye treatment is to avoid touching or rubbing the eyes frequently. Touching, scratching or rubbing spreads the infection to other areas and may aggravate the condition and make it even more painful. Also, touching the eyes also has the risks of spreading the infection to people around you if you touch other objects with the same hands again. Avoid wearing contact lenses if you wear one at this point of time as it could be painful removing and wearing them again and again.
- Secondly, it is important to clean the eyes nicely with a sterilized cotton and boiled and lukewarm water. Cleaning also helps to wipe out the crust formed on the outer lids of the eyes and gives you relief from the pain. The outer crusty layer may make the eyes difficult to open. Cleaning them first thing in the morning will help you open the eyes without any pain or difficulty.
- Warm compress: Warm compress also helps and gives a big relief to the pain and inflammation in the eyes, caused by conjunctivitis. This can be done by pressing a warm cloth or cotton pad to the eyes gently. Doing this at least 4 – 5 times a day brings a lot of relief to pink eye infection. Warm compress really needs no extra effort as it can be done even if you are sitting idle at one place, You can also use by rubbing your palms together and pressing them gently on the eyes area. The warmth gives relief from swelling and pain caused from the ailment.
- Medicinal Eye drops: Using over the counter eye drops helps in getting rid from pink eye infection. A lot of eye drops are available in the market today that provides instant relief from the condition specially if you have to attend a social function or any other event outside the house. However, before using one it is important to go through the instructions provided with the medicine.
- Vitamins and Supplements: Having a well nourished diet rich in vitamins and important minerals plays a big role in preventing pink eye. The most important vitamin is Vitamin A for excellent eye health and eye related infections. Sometimes, frequent occurrence of pink eye or conjunctivitis is a result of vitamin A deficiency, hence taking a diet rich in vitamin A like carrots, milk, cheese, spinach and potatoes also helps in compensating the deficiency of vitamin A. Also Vitamin E and Vitamin C are also excellent for boosting up your immune system and help prevent frequently occurring infections in the eye and other parts as well. Another helpful supplement in curing pink eye is an increased intake of Zinc. Extra doses of zinc through supplements help in better absorption of vitamin A from the food sources.
- Natural Remedies for Pink Eye: Apart from the medicines there are a plenty of good natural remedies for treating pink eye. One of the best ones is to put a green tea or chamomile tea bag dipped in cold water over the affected eye and lie down for a while keeping the eyes closed and relaxing. The antioxidant and medicinal properties of these tea bags provide a soothing relief to the burning eye and help cure it soon. Also putting raw potato slices on the eyelids also proves to be quite effective in this ailment. Aloe era juice and castor oil when used as an eye drop in the eyes also help in getting rid of this painful condition.
- Staying away from Pollutants: If you are a frequent sufferer of this disease and you eyes have the tendency of catching a conjunctivitis infection several times a year then probably you are prone to some bad allergens present in the atmosphere around you. It is advisable to stay away from the chemicals and pollutants if there are any around you. People living in industrial areas are the most sensitive sufferers of this disease. Cover your eyes with sun glasses or zero powered glasses when you step out in smoke or dust. If you feel any foreign object pr particle inside the eye and feel itchy it is important to wash the eyes with clean water instead of rubbing it with hands or fingers.
- When to see a doctor: Under normal conditions, a pink eye condition can go on its own and do not require any specific medicines or drops. However, if the condition persists for more than 4 or 5 days and results in major itching and irritation and causes redness or swelling then it is advisable to contact on ophthalmologist or a physician as soon as possible. The doctor might test the eyes to see if there is a chance of a contagious bacterial or viral infection and may prescribe you come antibiotic oral medicines or eyedrops that would cure the condition in minimum 4-5 days.
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