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Pink eye

Conjunctivitis, commonly called pink eye, causes redness and swelling inside the eyelid and the white part of the eye. It may also cause pain and itchiness.

Pink eye is quite common, and some types spread easily. You can prevent pink eye from spreading to others by taking care of your hygiene by washing your hands often and avoiding sharing items such as makeup, towels and pillowcases.

Some types of pink eye resolve without treatment. If your pink eye is mild, you can ease your symptoms at home using over-the-counter eye drops and a cold compress and lubrication eye drops. Other types of pink eye may require professional medical care.

Pink eye in newborns

Pink eye is usually a serious health issue for newborns. Contact your doctor if your baby has the following:

Symptoms of pink eye

The most common pink eye symptoms include:

Pink eyes can also cause:

If you wear contacts, they may not stay in place or feel uncomfortable. Do not use your contact lenses if you get a pink eye and if your pink eye is associated with use of contact lenses you most see an eye doctor to make sure is not due to infection.

Can I have pink eye?

Anyone can have pink eye, as it is one of the most common eye problems in adults and children. You are likely to get a pink eye if you:

Newborns also have a higher risk for pink eye, which is usually severe for them.

What can cause pink eye?

In most cases, pink eye results from a bacterial or viral infection, but the most common is viral pink eye.

Pink eye may also occur from allergies to pet fur, pollen, or other things that can bother the eye, like air pollution, makeup or pool water with chlorine.

It may be difficult to determine the exact cause of pink eye because the symptoms are often the same.

How can I prevent spreading pink eye?

Bacterial and viral pink eye can easily spread, but the following steps will limit its spread.

If you are around someone who has pink eye:

If you have pink eye:

The following steps can also help prevent the reoccurrence of pink eye

When should I see a doctor for pink eye?

In most cases, pink eye gets better on its own. Visit your doctor if:

The doctor will examine your eye and ask questions to determine the cause of your pink eye and the best treatment.

Treatment for pink eye

Pink eye usually gets better after 7 – 10 days, but you may need to visit your eye doctor for treatment.

If you have pink eyes and the symptoms are becoming worse, visit Optimal Vision to see our eye doctor for an eye exam and treatment. You can call us on 020 7183 3725 to schedule an appointment.

Dr Amir Mani - Specialist refractive surgeon

One of the most experienced refractive surgeons in London

Dr Mani has performed more than 20,000 ophthalmic procedures, including LASIK, LASEK, PRK, Femto Cataract, RLE, Lens ICL and Phakic IOL Surgery

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