Symptoms of Conjunctivitis

The most apparent symptom of conjunctivitis is the redness caused by the inflammation. This redness in and around the eye is what gives conjunctivitis the name, pink eye. This is an eye problem that is common and has several causes. The symptoms will be slightly different depending on the cause but many symptoms will be the same across the board. Some of them are burning, itching, pain, irritation, discharge, watering and crusting.

These are all symptoms that will give you an idea of what kind of conjunctivitis you are dealing with. Conjunctivitis that is caused by bacteria or viral infections is extremely contagious. Allergic conjunctivitis is due to allergens or foreign bodies getting into the eyes and it is not contagious. Infectious conjunctivitis can be easily spread from sneezing and coughing, as small drops of saliva that have the virus or bacteria in it, are sprayed in to the air.

Sharing towels or washcloths, along with touching surfaces, such as doorknobs and counter tops, after an infected person, can also spread conjunctivitis. While conjunctivitis can strike adults, it most commonly occurs in children, especially younger children and infants. This is because conjunctivitis is spread very quickly in daycare and school. To prevent conjunctivitis in the common areas, the children as well as the adults should do frequent washing of the hands.

Also keeping disinfectant spray near by and using it frequently is a good idea. How the infected eye feels is going to be one of the best clues as to what kind of conjunctivitis may be present. For allergic conjunctivitis there will be the redness, itching, and large amounts of tearing. There may also be cold-like symptoms such as a sore throat plus a runny, stuffy or itchy nose. With bacterial conjunctivitis it will be in both eyes and has all of the above symptoms but has puss-like discharge that is yellow or green in color.

This discharge can dry on the eyelashes, crusting the eyelids together. Viral conjunctivitis has all the symptoms above except the watering will be less and the puss-like discharge thinner. Also viral conjunctivitis may only infect one eye but can be spread to the other. If you seek the advice of a doctor be sure to tell them exactly what your symptoms are and whether they happened slowly over time or all at once. Also let them know if you have had contact with a person who may have had conjunctivitis.

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