5. Surefire Relief for Pink Eye

Pink eye is an inflammation of the conjunctiva, the covering of the inside of the eyelids and the whites of the eyes. The medical term for pink eye is conjuntivitis.

Some causes (and corresponding solutions) for this include:

  1. Allergic conjunctivitis. This is a reaction to airborne pollens, dust, mold spores, and animal dander or direct contact with chlorinated water or cosmetics. If you can’t avoid the allergens, antihistamines can help. So can certain eye drops. Ask your doctor what eye drops to use.

  2. Viral (common) or bacterial (less common) infection. Symptoms for both are redness of the whites of the eyes, watery, yellowish-green, or puslike discharge from the eye. It feels like you have something in your eye and you may have crusting on the eyelashes, a runny nose, and a sore throat.

  3. For a bacterial infection, antibiotic eyedrops or ointments are prescribed. A bacterial infection usually starts to clear up in two to three days, but take the eyedrops as long as prescribed. Viral infections are self-limiting and resolve without treatment, but antibiotic eye drops or ointments may be prescribed because it is hard to distinguish a viral infection from a bacterial one. It can take 14 to 21 days to clear up a viral infection.

  4. Wash your hands often and use your own towels. Pink eye is very contagious and can be spread from one person to another by contaminated fingers, washcloths, or towels. Avoid contact with other people as much as you can until you have used the prescribed antibiotic eye drops, etc. for 24 hours. Follow the rules of your workplace about pink eye. For children, follow the rules of their school.

  5. With your eyes closed, apply a cotton ball soaked in warm (not hot) water to the affected eye three or four times a day for at least 5 minutes at a time. Use a clean cotton ball each time. (These soaks also help to dissolve the crusty residue of pink eye.)

  6. Don’t share eye drops with others.

  7. Avoid wearing eye makeup until the infection has completely cleared up. Don’t share makeup with others. Throw away makeup that could be contaminated.

  8. Don’t cover or patch the eye; this can make the infection grow.

  9. Don’t wear contact lenses while your eyes are infected. Replace contact lenses or disinfect them before re-using.

  10. See a doctor if there is no improvement in two or three days or your eyes become painful or sensitive to light.

  11. Don’t touch the eye area with your fingers. If you must wipe your eyes, use tissues.

Chapter 1
  1. Fast Relief for Everyday Health Problems