Conjunctivitis : London Health

Conjunctivitis is a very common condition which is caused by a swelling of the conjunctiva (the thin layer of membrane that stretches over the whites of the eyes and the inner lining of the eyelids). It is a contagious condition, which can easily be spread. There are 3 types of conjunctivitis; these include:

  • Allergic conjunctivitis: this occurs as a result of contact with an allergen; common examples of allergens include pollen and animal hair
  • Irritant conjunctivitis: this occurs as a result of contact with a chemical or substance that causes a negative reaction in the eyes; examples of irritants include chlorine.
  • Infective conjunctivitis: this is caused by a viral or bacterial infection or a sexually transmitted infection

Symptoms of conjunctivitis:

Common symptoms of conjunctivitis include:

  • Itchy eyes
  • Red eyes
  • Swollen eyes
  • Watery eyes
  • Sensitivity to light

Treating conjunctivitis

Most cases of conjunctivitis can be treated using antihistamines, which will ease the symptoms of swelling and itching. Antihistamines are particularly effective for allergic conjunctivitis; you should also avoid touching your eyes and wipe them gently with a warm cloth regularly. In severe cases, eye drops may be prescribed and in rare cases, a course of corticosteroids may be recommended.

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