Pink eye is the common name of an eye disease medically known as “Conjunctivitis.” This medical term has two syllables; the conjunctiva means a transparent membrane covering the eye’s white part.
The word “itis” means inflammation. So, it is an inflammation of the conjunctiva.
The clinical manifestation includes swollen, red, more visible blood vessels, thereby giving the eyeball’s reddish-pink appearance. The major factors responsible for this highly contagious discomfort are viral, bacterial infections, hypersensitivity reactions, or the incomplete opening of the baby’s tear duct.
Natural treatment for pink eye what you can do at home is the first-line treatment. The medical assistance is required to alleviate the irritation and discomfort. Therefore, treatment involves antibiotic ointments and OTC drugs. No particular prescription requires to restore optical activity because the pink eye does not affect vision.
Early diagnosis and medical therapy implementation is encouraged and enforced to restrict the spread of inflammation.
Signs and Symptoms:
Signs are the indications or visible changes easily observed by the physician. On the other hand, symptoms are objective complaints that a patient can explain to his doctor.
- Inflammed blood vessels
- Redness in the eye
- Excessive tear formation
- White to yellowish discharge( pus), followed by crusting and drying at night and difficulty in opening eyes in the morning
- Redness in one or both eyes
- Irritation and itchiness
- Granular or gritty feeling in the eye
When to seek medical attention?
Pink eye is not a severe inflammatory eye disease and does not require intense medical cure. However, if the symptoms do not eliminate after 12 to 24 hours, then immediately consult a registered ophthalmologist.
Very rarely, it can cause light sensitivity and blurred vision. Generally, this condition causes something trapped in the eye, also referred to as a gritty feel. In this condition, patients yearn to eliminate this condition immediately at any cost. If you experience such symptoms, avoid wearing contact lenses, makeup, and artificial eyelashes.
The primary cause of conjunctivitis is a viral or bacterial infection. In most cases, adenovirus, herpes simplex, varicella-zoster viruses, and the covid-19 also can cause pink eye.
Pink eye usually occurs accompanying with cold, or other respiratory illnesses. It can occur in one or both eyes at the same time. Especially, pink eye caused by viral and bacterial infection is highly contagious.
Another reason why people frequently experience pink eye is an allergic reaction or hypersensitivity reaction. Different people are allergic to different allergens like pollens, weeds, grasses, or any other shrub.
When a person gets exposed to any of the allergens, the immune system becomes hyperactivated. These antigens or allergens cause the release of antibodies(IgE). The antigen-antibody complexes then cause the release of mast cells which in turn release histamine.
Histamine is the primary inflammatory principle causing the swelling and redness of blood vessels. Consequently, displaying the symptoms of conjunctivitis. This condition gets aggravated by the other symptoms of allergic rhinitis- characterized by the nasal discharge, sneezing and watery red eyes.
Various other foreign objects and chemicals can trigger the release of histamines. Removing the stimulus or the antigen can help improve the symptoms. A very harsh chemical splash can damage the eye with the persistent appearance of the symptoms.
Major Preventive Measures:
Since this pink eye is highly contagious, you should take specific precautionary measures to limit its spread.
- Do not touch the infected eye, especially the discharge. Also, avoid touching the unaffected eye after applying medication to the affected one.
- Maintain proper hygiene. Use clean cloths and towels for wiping off the face. Try to dry the water after facewash by air. Wash your hands many times in a day, particularly when you have accidentally touched your pink eye.
- Use an excellent antibiotic ointment in your affected eye at bedtime; it will help reduce the discharge accumulation and crusting.
- Even if crusting occurs, gently wash your eye with tap water and frequently change your pillowcase. Avoid sharing your pillows with other people.
- Do not use any contact lenses, eyelash glues, or other cosmetics in an infected pink eye.
The Warm and Cool Compress:
You can use a sterile cloth soaked and wrung n cold or warm water. The temperature of the water should be such that it won’t hurt your eyes. Press gently and repeat the steps several times a day. It also helps in removing the dried pus you find every morning.
Only use the cloth in an infected eye and keep the compress away from the healthy eye. If both eyes are infected, try using separate sterile lint-free cloths.
Castor oil is readily available at home and has marked anti-inflammatory properties. Thus, it can alleviate the symptoms of conjunctivitis. However, its application can cause blurred vision so you can prefer applying it at bedtime in less amount.
Over The Counter Medications:
You can easily find OTC eye drops at home. Using them at bedtime can help reduce irritation and itching in the eye. Pink eye caused by viruses improves itself after 1-2 weeks. Thus, it requires no medical assistance. If pus accumulation increases due to the bacterial infection, seek your ophthalmologist.