Pink Eye

What is Pink Eye?

Pink Eye is the common term for a condition also known as conjunctivitis.  The conjunctiva is the thin clear membrane over the white part of the eye; it also lines the eyelids.  Inflammation of this membrane is called conjunctivitis or pink eye.

What Causes Pink Eye (Conjunctivitis) ?

Pink eye may be triggered by a virus, bacteria, and allergic reaction to dust, pollen, smoke, fumes or chemicals.  In some cases a foreign body, such as a contact lens may also inflame the membrane causing pink eye.

Who is Most Likely to get Pink Eye?

Anyone is susceptible to pink eye, however is appears to be more common in pre-school and school age children.

What are the Symptoms of Pink Eye?

The most obvious symptom of course is a pinkish or red color of the eye, due to the inflammation. Pink eye may also cause your eye to hurt or itch.

How is Pink Eye Detected?

At the first sign of redness or itchiness you should call your eye care specialist for an examination.  To pinpoint the cause and then choose appropriate treatment, your eye doctor will ask some questions, examine your eyes and may even collect a sample on a swab to sent out for analysis.

How can Pink Eye be Treated?

Since pink eye is a bacterial infection and can be contagious, the best source of treatment is actually prevention.  Washing your hands frequently, avoid touching or rubbing your eyes, don’t share washcloths or eye makeup.  If you have contracted pink eye, your eye care specialist may recommend compresses, allergy pills or antibiotic eye drops in some cases.  Usually, pink eye is a minor eye infection, but sometimes it can develop into a more serious condition.  See your eye care specialist for a diagnosis before you attempt any treatment on your own.