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How To Treat The Pink Eye/contagious Conjunctivitis?

By Expert Author: Davis Walker

Conjunctivitis also known as "pink eye" is the inflammation of the outermost layer of the eye which is known as conjunctiva and inner surface of eyelids. People suffering from conjunctivitis will have irritation and soreness in the eye. It is also characterised by swelling of the eyes and watery discharge that causes the eyelids to stick together. It is caused by an allergic reaction in the eye or by a highly contagious viral or bacterial infection. Conjunctivitis, being highly contagious, the sufferers should ensure they limit their contact with others as much as possible.

There are several ways to deal with a contagious conjunctivitis at home. The following advice should help to ease your symptoms:

• Do not wear contact lenses until all the symptoms of the infection have gone. Avoid using them until 24 hours after you have finished a course of treatment. The old lens could be a potential source of re-infection so does not re-use the same lenses after the infection has passed.

• Use lubricating eye drops which are available over the counter at pharmacies. They may help to ease any stickiness and soreness and stickiness in your eyes. Follow the instructions of the manufacturer on the bottle.

• Gently clean off the sticky discharge from your eyelids and eyelashes using a damp cotton wool.

• Regularly wash your hands especially after you have touched your infected eyes. This will stop the spreading of the infection to other people.

• Do not rub your eyes, even when they may be itchy. Rubbing your eyes can make your symptoms worse.

• Placing a cool compress/ flannel soaked in rose water over your eyes will help ease your symptoms.

• Splash cold water frequently in to the eyes to relieve itching.

You must consult your healthcare provider if:

• The conjunctivitis is accompanied by moderate to severe pain in the eye.

• It is accompanied by vision problems like sensitivity to light, blurred vision etc that does not improve even when the discharge is wiped from the eye.

• It is accompanied by intense redness in the eye or the itchiness gets irritating.

• The symptoms become worse.

• Conjunctivitis occurs in a patient who is has a weakened immune system since he is suffering from cancer treatment, HIV infection or other medical conditions or treatments.

• Bacterial conjunctivitis which is being treated with antibiotics does not begin to improve after 24 hours of treatment.

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