All you need to know about eye infections

Eye infections are also known as conjunctivitis, which can be particularly painful and uncomfortable to deal with. Infections in the eye are a result of an inflammation of the conjunctiva (thin membrane that covers the white part of the eye and inside the eyelid) and are highly contagious. A common form is bacterial conjunctivitis, caused by bacteria and usually when you’re already feeling run down and your immune system is low, which is why people often suffer when they have a cough or cold.

Symptoms of eye infection:

  • Whites of the eyes may look pink and inflamed and the eyelids may be swollen
  • Eyes may feel gritty and sore with a burning sensation that should be more uncomfortable than painful
  • You may notice a sticky yellow discharge from the eyes, which can stick on the eyelashes and dry overnight – making it difficult to open the eyes in the morning

The condition can easily spread to both eyes but there are a few things to look out for. Eye infections shouldn’t really cause pain as your eyes should feel sore and not painful. You shouldn’t experience blurred vision or any loss of vision as blinking should clear all blurring. You should also see a doctor if you notice scratches to the eye, a sensitivity to light or blisters and sore patches around the eye.

Top causes of eye infections:

  • Contact with someone who already has an eye infection
  • Wearing contact lenses and having poor lens hygiene
  • Low immune system
  • Touching your eyes with unclean fingers
  • Having particularly dry eyes as your natural protection against infection is reduced

Treating eye infections:

The best way to treat conjunctivitis is with eye drops as they help to reduce the length of the infection and suppress the severity of the symptoms. They will keep your eyes hydrated in order to soothe soreness and discomfort. Try Optrex’s Infected Eye Drops for the treatment of acute bacterial conjunctivitis. You can use eye drops and eye ointment together if you use drops during the day and ointment throughout the night.

Preventing the spread of infection:

  • Always wash your hands regularly, especially after touching the infected eye area
  • Don’t share towels, pillows or makeup
  • Avoid using eye makeup until the infection has fully cleared and dispose of used makeup to prevent re-contamination
  • Don’t wear contact lenses when you have an infection and clean them thoroughly before using them again
  • Always dispose of tissues used to wipe the infected eyes straight away