Harlem VistaSite Eye Care
Optometry located in Harlem, New York, NY
Pink eye affects close to three million Americans in the United States every year. It’s an extremely contagious infection that can cause you severe pain and discomfort. The team at Harlem VistaSite Eye Care in New York City specializes in finding the most effective and expedient treatments to permanently get rid of your pink eye infection. Call or go online today to book an appointment for expert and quality care.
Pink Eye Q & A
What is pink eye?
Pink eye is a highly contagious inflammation of both the thin white part of the eye and inside the eyelids (the conjunctiva). Inflammation of the conjunctiva causes blood vessels to dilate, making your eye appear red or bloodshot.
What are the causes of pink eye?
Pink eye can come about for a variety of reasons, though each cause is most often related to a specific kind of pink eye—or conjunctivitis. Bacteria, viruses, and allergies can cause pink eye.
Viral conjunctivitis typically creates a watery discharge in your eye as a result of exposure to a virus in your environment. In most cases, viral conjunctivitis starts in one eye and rapidly spreads to the other.
Bacterial conjunctivitis often stems from exposure to infection from someone else or from an infection you have. Bacterial conjunctivitis can come about as a result of a sinus or ear infection. It often produces thick discharges and pus.
You might also get conjunctivitis if there’s something in your environment that causes an allergic reaction, like pet dander, dust, or pollen.
When your body is exposed to allergens, it produces immunoglobulin, antibodies that cause mast cells in your mucous lining to release inflammatory substances, like histamine. In some cases, histamine can lead to an allergic reaction like redness or pink eye.
Allergic conjunctivitis is much easier to treat, as it’s a direct cause of a known allergen.
In some other cases, you might contract pink eye if your eye is exposed to a chemical splash or a foreign object.
What are the symptoms of pink eye?
With pink eye, you can expect any of the following symptoms.
- Crust-inducing discharges
Get in touch with Harlem VistaSite Eye Care immediately if you experience any of these symptoms.
How do you treat pink eye?
During your appointment at Harlem VistaSite Eye Care, your doctor can recommend artificial tears or warm/cold compresses to moisturize your eye and clean out your eyelids. You should also stop wearing your contact lenses until the infection has cleared.
Viral conjunctivitis typically lasts for several days without the need for serious medical intervention. However, your doctor might prescribe antibiotic eye drops or ointment to fight off bacterial conjunctivitis.
If you think you’re exhibiting symptoms of conjunctivitis, don’t wait to schedule an appointment over the phone or online at Harlem VistaSite Eye Care. Walk-ins are also welcome at the practice.