As the winters arrive and settle, most people experience one of the most common eye infections – conjunctivitis. But why is winter considered the peak season for conjunctivitis? Let us explain.
Conjunctivitis is a contagious eye infection that is caused by allergens in the air. For the rest of the year, conjunctivitis is the result of allergies due to dust or pollen, or a reaction to chlorine in a swimming pool, but it is different during the cold season. Bacteria and viruses are the causes of eye infections in winter, making it highly contagious.
How do we prevent ourselves from contracting conjunctivitis? Is there a way? Yes, there are a couple of things that you could do to steer clear of this seasonal eye infection.
Here are some simple conjunctivitis prevention tips.
Conjunctivitis Prevention Tips
#1 Keep Your Hands Clean
If you are around someone with conjunctivitis, you can reduce your risk of infection. Wash your hands often with soap and water for approximately 20 seconds. If you do not have soap or water at your rescue, you can opt for an alcohol-based sanitizer to clean your hands. Always use a sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol to kill all those germs, viruses, and bacteria.
#2 Do Not Share Makeup
How many of you share your makeup with your best friend, sister, or mother? I think we all have done that at some point in time and regret it. Makeup is a perfect breeding place for bacteria, especially if you have shared it with someone who has conjunctivitis. It is a NIGHTMARE, truly.
However, if you did share your share your makeup with someone, there’s only one thing left to do – SANITIZE IT! Use sanitizing wipes that are makeup-friendly and a brush cleaner to clean and disinfect.
Also Read: 7 Simple And Crucial Tips To Avoid Eye Infection
#3 Avoid Sharing Towels And Bedding
Sharing personal care items such as hand towels, face towels, and beds can help spread the bacteria. Conjunctivitis is a highly contagious eye infection, and it is best to avoid it. Most people believe that it spreads through eye contact, but that is not 100 percent true. Pink eye only spreads through direct contact with the infected person or by using items they have touched such as towels and beds.
#4 Avoid Touching Your Eyes Frequently
Touching your eyes frequently, especially when you are with someone infected with conjunctivitis, increases your chances of contracting it. So, if you feel the urge to rub your eyes, make sure that you wash your before you do. Make sure you keep your eyewear clean. Clean eyeglasses ensure that no bacteria enter your eyes.
What To Do If You Are Around Someone With Conjunctivitis?
- Wash your hands thoroughly for 20 seconds after tending to the infected person.
- Refrain from touching your eyes with unwashed hands.
- Do not use any item used by the infected person.
When Should You See A Doctor?
Most cases of conjunctivitis are considered mild and can be self-treated. The infection will take seven to fourteen days to clear up. However, in severe cases, it can take around two to three weeks.This is normal.
Most cases of pink eye do not require a doctor’s intervention, but if you notice any of the following symptoms, you have to see one ASAP.
- Weakened immune system
- Pain in either one or both eyes
- Sensitivity to light
- Vision is blurry
- Conjunctivitis symptoms continue for a longer duration or worsen
- Symptoms persist after usage of prescribed antibiotic drops
- Fever followed by other signs such as swollen glands or a sense of tiredness
Common Conjunctivitis Symptoms
- Redness in the eyes
- Thick yellow discharge
- Burning sensation
- Sensitivity to light
- Swelling in the eyelids
Also Read: Different Types Of Eye Infections Explained!
Conjunctivitis Treatment At Home
Treating conjunctivitis at home is easy. All you need is over-the-counter eye drops or a warm compress to reduce the swelling. To make a compress, use a clean washcloth that has not been used and discard it once done to prevent the infection from spreading.
Conjunctivitis often spreads because of poor hygiene. If someone in your family is infected, make sure you do not touch anything they have come in contact with, as this could only make things worse for you. Even though eye conjunctivitis is considered a self-treatable infection, it is wise to take precautions to avoid it.