What Are the Basics of Pink Eye?

What is pink eye?

When you find your eye or eyes reddish or pink, you may have pink eye, aka conjunctivitis. It indicates an infection or an inflammation of your conjunctiva, a transparent membrane that covers the white part of your eyes.


What are the symptoms of pink eye?

Symptoms of pink eye include:

  • Redness in one or both eyes
  • Itching in one or both eyes
  • Feeling gritty in one or both eyes
  • Thick and sticky discharge building up at night
  • Abnormally tearing


What are the causes of pink eye?

There are various causes of pink eye, including:

  • Viruses
  • Bacteria
  • Allergies
  • Chemicals
  • Injuries

Viral and bacterial pink eye can be the result or the symptom of a cold or a respiratory infection. Besides, if a chemical splash or a foreign object enters your eye or eyes, it may also lead to pink eye.


How do doctors diagnose pink eye?

Usually, your doctor will ask about your symptoms, including redness, itching, abnormal tearing, etc. He or she will also ask you questions about your medical history. Besides, you will have a physical exam of your eyes.

In some cases, your doctor will take a sample of your eye discharge and send it to a lab.


What are the treatments for pink eye?

The treatments may vary because of the different causes:

  • Viral pink eye
    Actually, the symptoms of viral pink eye tend to disappear on their own.
  • Bacterial pink eye
    Your doctor may prescribe you artificial tears. In some cases, antibiotic eyedrops can also be helpful.
  • Allergic pink eye
    You may need various eyedrops. These eyedrops contain substances that can reduce allergic reactions, such as antihistamines.


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* The Content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.