The eye infections are caused by various reasons such as viral or bacterial attack and the effects can range from simple discomfort to severe pain and swelling that may have serious consequences unless treated urgently by qualified eye specialists. These eye infections can affect people of all ages and with equal severity when the causing conditions are met. Since the eye is constantly exposed to various kinds of pathogens present in the environment where the people stay in, these infections take place when the system’s defensive mechanism is degraded in its efficiency.
Another important aspect of the eye infections is that they are highly contagious and spread rapidly whenever the affected person interacts with others from close quarters. In order to deal with such a condition effectively one needs to understand the various causative factor, the tell tale indications and available remedial measures.
Types of Eye Infections: Symptoms, Causes and Treatments
Among the wide range of infections that can affect the yes, the most common are the Pink eyes (Conjunctivitis), Stye, Blepharitis, Cellulitis, Keratitis, Corneal ulcers and Trachoma. Three of the most easily attained infections have been discussed in the following paragraphs.
This is by far the most common of the eye infections to be affecting millions of people around the world being caused by the infection of the conjuctiva of the eyes. It is characterized by redness accompanied with irritation and inflammation of the eyes. Though not a serious condition, this infection does merit a medical treatment at the earliest to reduce the symptoms and avoid its spread. Increased secretion of tears is also a symptom associated with Pink eyes. Sometimes a yellowish secretion also takes place which tends to stick together both the eyelashes making it difficult to open the eyes.
Conjunctive is the thin membrane covering the entire white portion of the eyes and is clear in its appearance. Viral, bacterial and allergic infection of this membrane leads to the inflammation and subsequent reddening of the eyes. Viruses from the other physical ailments like the sore throat, cold and respiratory tract infections may spread to the eyes causing Conjunctivitis. Bacteria such as staphylococci and streptococci are responsible for bacterial infections whereas allergy agents such .fumes, dust, chemicals and cosmetic may trigger off the allergic variant of this condition.
The best treatment for Pink Eyes infection is by antibiotics to reduce the infection and anti allergic drops to prevent aggravation of the inflammation caused by the allergy agents. However despite the medical treatment, this condition usually runs its course before subsiding. Warm compresses are an effective means of removing the crusty and sticky secretions from the eye lashes.
This particular condition results from the infection of the eyelids which is more serious in nature and has the potential to cause permanent damage to the eyes unless treated for immediately. Swelling of the eyelids is the primary symptom which may also be accompanied by other indications such as crustiness, redness, itching, burning sensation, excessive tearing, blurring of vision, depletion of eyelashes and dry eyes.
Blepharitis eye infections are of two basic types – Anterior Blapharitis and Posterior Blapharitis depending on which portion of the eye the infection actually affects. The primary cause for this kind of eye infections is bacterial action and presence of dandruff on the eyebrows. At times certain allergic agents in the eyelashes may also trigger this infection.
The foremost criteria in the treatment of this infection are to keep the eyelashes free of crust which can be achieved through warm compresses. Antibiotics are used to reduce the effects of the infection. Eyelid massages help in flushing out the oil deposited in the eyelid glands and thereby clear their passages. Artificial tears, lubricating ointments and even application of anti dandruff agents to the eyebrows can be resorted to in severe conditions of such eye infections.
This is the other most common condition affecting the eyes form of eye infections. Seen as small bumps on the lids of the eyes, the Stye is primarily a blockage of the oil producing glands due to bacterial infections. This is a rather harmless condition that may cure on its won due to the body’s immunity system mechanism of self cures. In some more complicated cases a surgical procedure may be required to drain of the accumulated oils in the blocked glands.
Common symptoms of associated with a Stye include swelling on the eyelids which can be seen as a distinct bump. Redness, pain, tenderness, discomfort and tenderness of the eyes are some of the other indicators of a Stye. There may also be excessive tearing in the eyes owing to these kinds of eye infections.
Warm compresses are the most common treatment that reduces the swelling by opening up the glands which are prescribed by doctors in the initial stages. Some antibiotics may be taken as a measure against the spread of the infection which is quite unlikely in such cases. In case of the swelling turning hard and persistent, the clot may be removed by a minor incision which drains off the oil and reduces the bump.
Some Useful Tips for Preventing Infections and their Spread
The eyes are one of the most sensitive parts of the body. Therefore eye infections must be treated with seriousness in order to prevent any drastic consequences. There are a few common methods by which most of such eye infections can be avoided and their spread arrested.
- Washing of the hands thoroughly before and after touching the eyes when administering medicines.
- Avoiding the use of eyelid makeup till such time that any such infection is completely cured. Sharing of eyelid makeup is one of the most common reasons for the spread of eye infections.
- Avoid sharing your contact lenses and their solution with anyone else in order to ensure that you do not pick up infections.
- Completely avoid the use of contact lenses when the infection is affecting the eyes.
- Towels, linen, pillows, handkerchief and other items that come in contact with the eyes are often the prime culprits in spreading eye infections.
- All eye medicines must be used for individual purposes only.
- Whenever likely to face dusty conditions, make sure that you wear protective eye glasses. This also applies to conditions which are known to chemical agents, dust and pollen in the air.
- Avoid washing eyes with water whose cleanliness is under doubt.
Do follow the above eye care tips because Eyes are the most important among all sense organs of the body providing us with the essential visual inputs for living our daily lives. Any kind of eye infections are likely to affect our visions and our ability to function normally. Thus there is a urgent requirement to understand and imbibe the basic principle of maintaining good hygiene for the eyes. Regular washing with clean water and avoiding exposure to allerg6y causing agents are the two simple means of taking care of the eyes which will ward of most kinds of eye infections. Care to avoid coming in close contact with infected people and their belongings is another important means of staying away from the infections. Last vital aspect of dealing with eye infections is to immediately consult a trained eye specialist rather than attempting any kind of cure based on heresay.