Can Viral Eye Infections Impair Your Vision?
Viral eye infections are typically an inflammation of the cornea and the membrane that covers the eyeball called the conjunctiva. Several factors such as environmental hazards, allergic reactions, certain illnesses, bacteria and viruses can be the cause of an infection of the eye, but the virus called adenovirus is responsible for most eye infections.
Common types of eye infections are conjunctivitis or pink eye, stye, trachoma and blepharitis. Viral eye infections are very contagious and occur by human contact involving tears or fluid of an infected person.
The infection might persist for two to three weeks and whilst taking or applying antibiotics cannot eliminate the condition, eye drops and a cold or warm compress on the eye are good remedies for this discomfort.
Causes of Viral Eye Infections
Viral infections associated with a cold, measles or sore throat causes most cases of conjunctivitis or “pink eye”. A deficiency of vitamin A has been shown to make some people more prone to eye infections. Wearing contact lenses can also make you susceptible to eye infections because bacteria can build up if the lenses are not properly disinfected.
Constant eye irritation brought on by allergies can also cause eye infections. Allergic reactions to certain foods can bring on frequent conjunctivitis. Other factors include eye injury, overuse of non prescription eye drops, and exposure of harsh chemicals that come in contact with the eyes can all trigger an eye infection. The following are some types of eye infections.
Types Of Eye Infections
Conjunctivitis, commonly called pink eye, is an inflammation of the transparent membrane that lines the front eyelid and eyeball. It is contagious and though it is irritating, it does not affect or impair the vision. Typical symptoms include redness, itchiness, a burning sensation, a thin watery discharge, and a yellow crust that forms on the eyelids during sleep.
Most pink eye infections are either viral or allergic reactions. With this eye infection, the inflammation causes small blood vessels in the eye membranes to become more prominent, making the eyes pink or red according to the severity of the infection.
Stye is an infection of a gland of the eyelids. It mostly resembles a pimple on the eyelid and can grow on the inside or outside of the lid. This eye infection is generally caused by the staphylococcal bacteria and it can be contagious. A stye can occur at any age but it is not harmful to the vision. It normally heals on its own within a few days.
Blepharitis, an inflammation of the eyelids and eyelashes, makes the eyes red and causes irritation of the eyelids and also produces whitish scales on the eyelashes. This eye disorder is mostly caused by bacteria and although it is an uncomfortable ailment, blepharitis is not contagious and it usually does not cause any damage to the eyes.
Trachoma is a bacterial infection that affects the eyes. This is a very serious and highly contagious eye condition that mostly affects both eyes. Early symptoms of trachoma are mild itching and irritation of the eyes and eyelids, which progresses to eye pain and blurred vision. Trachoma can lead to blindness if left untreated trachoma.
Symptoms of Viral Eye Infections
Irritation and itching
Redness and soreness of the eyes
Gritty feeling on the eyes
Sensitivity to light
Yellowish eye discharge that crusts over the eyelids
Natural Treatment For Eye Infections
The eyes are very delicate and precious, acting as the windows of the soul into the world. Because of this, good care must be given to them and as such symptoms of an eye infection should be treated promptly to avoid complications or impairment to the vision.
Viral eye infections treatment may vary depending on the severity, but since antibiotics are not usually effective in treating viral infections, it is useless for your doctor to prescribe one for the treatment of this type of infection. However, for if the eye infection is caused by bacteria or fungi, then, your doctor may prescribe an antibiotic eye drops or ointment for treatment. The following are natural remedies you may use to clear the symptoms of viral eye infections.
Wash your hands with antibacterial soap before and after touching your eyes. Most eye infections can be very contagious and in order to minimize or prevent the spread of the infection, practice this hygienic method religiously and try to keep your fingers out of your eyes. Also be sure to wash your towels and bedding frequently and change your pillowcase often.
Contact lenses can harbor germs if they are not properly disinfected. To help the infection clear faster, switch to normal glasses if you regularly wear contacts.
Eye make-ups like mascara and eyeliners can be contaminated if you develop eye infection. Get rid of the ones you were using when you contracted the infection to avoid reoccurring of the infection.
Chamomile is known for its soothing and calming effect. Chamomile tea can be applied to the eyes by seeping 2 teabags in 3 cups of boiling water. Allow the tea to cool down and apply the tea to the eye several times a day. You can also use the tea bag as a compress for the eyes by allowing the tea bags to cool down before applying them to the infected eyes for about 12 minutes at a time.
Honey has antibacterial properties and can help to kill harmful bacteria. You can mix equal parts of honey with boiled water. Allow the mixture to cool down and apply the solution to the eye with a wash cloth or cotton balls. The honey can also be applied to the eyes undiluted. Alternatively, you can use this solution as an eye drop or eyewash. Apply it about three times a day until symptoms clear.
Boric acid eyewash, a mild water soluble acid, can be used to rinse the eyes to help relieve the discomfort of pink eye or viral eye infections. You can also apply it to cotton balls and use as a compress for the affected eye to help relieve the discomfort.
Boost your immune system to fight the infection. Supplements like vitamin A, vitamin C and zinc promotes healing and enhances the immune system. Use dosages recommended on the label.
Calendula, is an antiseptic that is effective in reducing itching and inflammation. You can use it as an eye wash or for a compress.
Baby shampoo can also be used as an eyewash for viral eye infections or pink eye. Dilute a small amount of tearless baby shampoo in water and use a clean washcloth or cotton balls to gently clean the eyelids any debris in or around the eyes. This should be done just about twice a week.
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