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Conjunctivitis: types, symptoms and treatment

by Alivia Nyhan
Published: Last Updated on

The Conjunctivitis is an inflammation of the membrane lining the inside of the eyelid known as conjunctiva. This inflammation can be caused by different origins, such as a virus, a bacteria or an allergic reaction , as well as being damaged by other factors such as smoke or dust. In certain cases, conjunctivitis can last for a long time when a complication occurs, but generally, it is easy to heal if we apply a treatment as soon as it is detected. It is very common in children , but it also occurs in adults and can be detected by the reddish color it gives to the eyes., due to inflammation of the blood vessels, in addition to experiencing other symptoms. Do you feel itchy eyes, irritation, burning, blemishes or the feeling that you have grains of sand? At FastlyHealwe will explain the types, symptoms and treatment of conjunctivitis .

Types of conjunctivitis

To begin with, we must distinguish the types of conjunctivitis . Each type is caused by a different cause , which will allow the appropriate treatment to be applied. Do not forget that you must see a doctor so that a diagnosis can be made.

  • Bacterial conjunctivitis . It is the most common type of conjunctivitis . It usually appears in one eye and quickly spreads to the other, experiencing a reddish color in both. The eyes secrete a greater amount of tears, which will make you have to dry them regularly. You may also feel itchy and experience the sensation of grit inside your eyes.
  • Viral conjunctivitis . As in the previous case, it usually appears in one eye and later, it spreads to the other, presenting a reddish color and the eyelids may present swelling. These symptoms can be accompanied by lymph node pain and fever , as well as a sore throat and congestion. This type of conjunctivitis is easily contagious , since no symptoms are detected during the first days, so measures are not taken to cure it and it can be spread by contact with other people. If it goes on for a while, it can cause vision problems, such as blurred vision.
  • Allergic conjunctivitis . The advantage of this type of conjunctivitis is the knowledge of the cause on the part of the sufferer , since people who have allergies, in general, know what it is due to. It is common for it to take place in spring, as a result of pollen in the air. Symptoms commonly experienced are: itchy eyes, swelling, redness, and excessive tearing.

Symptoms associated with conjunctivitis

Although in the previous point we have indicated the symptoms in each type of conjunctivitis, in general, they are usually the same in all cases:

  • Reddened eyes due to dilation of blood vessels.
  • Itching , irritation of the eyes.
  • Swelling of the eyelids
  • Excessive tearing
  • Sensation of having grit in the eyes that can become very annoying, especially when the eyes are closed.
  • Legañas that usually form during the night and that harden.
  • Sensitivity to light.
  • White, yellow, or greenish discharge from the eye.

Usually, symptoms appear quickly , without spending much time between one and the other, so it is possible that you woke up with several of these symptoms when the day before you had the feeling that your eyes were fine. In the event that you have woken up with blemishes, it may seem a bit cumbersome because they appear at night and dry out, but with a little water they can be removed.

Conjunctivitis treatment

The treatment for conjunctivitis will vary depending on the type of conjunctivitis that is suffered , but we can apply a series of measures in all cases that can help us alleviate the symptoms.

In the case of bacterial conjunctivitis , antibiotic eye drops are usually the most effective in combating it, in addition to good eye hygiene. When it comes to viral conjunctivitis , prevention of transmission is important , since it is easily contagious, so frequent washing with water should be carried out and avoid contact of our hands with our eyes. This can be difficult because if we experience itching we will tend to touch our eyes. Finally, allergic conjunctivitis usually disappears on its own after a time that can vary, but to alleviate its symptoms a cold compress can be applieddirectly over closed eyes. For both viral and allergic conjunctivitis, the best treatment is the use of corticosteroid eye drops , except when a herpes infection has occurred. Treatment usually lasts more than a week.

In all cases, it is very important to maintain good hygiene of our hands to avoid contagion to other people. We can carry alcohol with our hands in case we are away from home.

When to go to the doctor?

Conjunctivitis is not a serious problem at first and usually clears up after a few days on its own. However, on some occasions there may be more bothersome symptoms or some factors to take into account, so we give some recommendations on when to go to the doctor:

  • Sensitivity to light.
  • Blurry vision.
  • Excessive redness of the eyes.
  • Strong eye pain.
  • Having a disease that leads to a weakened immune system, such as HIV.
  • If symptoms worsen or no improvement is felt within 24 hours of starting treatment, in cases of bacterial and viral conjunctivitis.
  • Any previous infection in the eyes.

Other conditions that you can have in the eyes with similar symptoms are the stye or itchy eyes .

This article is merely informative, at FastlyHeal .com we do not have the power to prescribe medical treatments or make any type of diagnosis. We invite you to see a doctor in the case of presenting any type of condition or discomfort.

If you want to read more articles similar to Conjunctivitis: types, symptoms and treatment , we recommend that you enter our Eyes and Vision category .

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