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Last Updated: Sep 05, 2019
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Conjunctivitis - Symptom, Treatment And Causes

What is Conjunctivitis? Complications Treatment Causes

What is Conjunctivitis?

The eyes get inflamed and red in the frontal thin tissue layer that sheaths the eye in conjunctivitis, which is a quite common condition. It is colloquially referred to as red-eye. It generally starts with one eye, but after some hours, also spreads to the other eye.


It is quite frustrating to have conjunctivitis, especially allergic conjunctivitis. Thankfully it doesn’t have serious health implications in most instances. The conjunctivitis complications are rare. When they do manifest, it might be serious. They include:

  • Extreme cases of allergic conjunctivitis might result in scarring of the eyes.
  • Infective conjunctivitis might result in the infection spreading to other body parts, and may trigger graver secondary infections like meningitis.


Conjunctivitis doesn’t usually need any treatment as the symptoms usually disappear after a few weeks. If treatment becomes necessary, it will be cause dependent. Antibiotic eye drops may be used in extremely severe cases to remove the infection. Irritant conjunctivitis clears up as and when the causative factors are removed. Antihistamine (anti allergic medicine) can be used to treat allergic conjunctivitis. The allergen should be avoided if possible. Contact lenses are best avoided till the time the symptoms clear up. Any crusty or sticky eyelid or lash coating should be cleaned carefully using water and cotton wool.

Regular hand washes and avoiding sharing towels and pillows help stop the transmission. Consult your doctor immediately if there is any:

  • Eye pain
  • Light sensitivity
  • Disturbance in vision
  • Severe redness in both or one of the eyes
  • Conjunctivitis in new born

School and Work

School and work shouldn’t be avoided in case of conjunctivitis unless there is extreme un-wellness. If multiple children in your child’s nursery or school have conjunctivitis, then it is best to keep your children at home till the time the infection subsides. Even adults who are working in such an environment and have close proximity should take a break from work till the time the infection is no more.


Inflamed conjunctiva may be so because of the following:

  • A viral or bacterial infection (also called infective conjunctivitis)
  • Dust mite or pollen allergies (also called allergic conjunctivitis)
  • Eye getting irritated by chlorinated water or shampoo or even a stray eye lash (also called irritant conjunctivitis)
  • Neonatal Conjunctivitis
  • Newly born babies under the age of 28 days are affected by neonatal conjunctivitis. Most instances of neonatal conjunctivitis isn’t usually serious. The mother doesn’t usually show any symptoms and thus may be unaware that they have been infected. A doctor should be consulted if there any symptoms of neonatal conjunctivitis in your baby.

Popular Questions & Answers

Now it has effected both my eye, I require a eye drop to reduce the redness. I have conjunctivitis. Can you help out.

MBBS, Basic Life Support (B.L.S), Advanced Cardiac Life Support, Fellow of Academy of General Education (FAGE)
General Physician, Delhi
I am sorry to hear about your concern, but I will be happy to assist you it is important to first identify the cause of the conjunctivitis and then start the treatment because conjunctivitis can be viral or bacterial in nature let's connect over a...

Eye conjunctivitis in right side from last 1 week. Tiny eye, swelling, redness,eye irritation, blur vision.

MBBS, Basic Life Support (B.L.S), Advanced Cardiac Life Support, Fellow of Academy of General Education (FAGE)
General Physician, Delhi
Most cases of pink eye are caused by a virus. Both viral and bacterial conjunctivitis can occur along with colds or symptoms of a respiratory infection, such as a sore throat. Wearing contact lenses that aren't cleaned properly or aren't your own ...

My name is vishal dwivedi I am 24 years old. I am suffering from dry eyes sensitivity to light itching red and watery eye. I have been to eye doctors they said to use moisture drops. I am using every eye drop and genteal gel. But still conjunctivitis remain always in my eye. I need any medicine for conjunctivitis.

MBBS, Basic Life Support (B.L.S), Advanced Cardiac Life Support, Fellow of Academy of General Education (FAGE)
General Physician, Delhi
Eye allergy, also known as allergic conjunctivitis, is an adverse immune response that occurs when the eye comes into contact with an irritating substance. The reaction leads to numerous irritating symptoms, such as itchy, red, and watery eyes. In...
1 person found this helpful

My eyes were treatment by femto lasik 3 years ago. Now I have conjunctivitis in one eyes. Which medicine should be used?

MBBS, Basic Life Support (B.L.S), Advanced Cardiac Life Support, Fellow of Academy of General Education (FAGE)
General Physician, Delhi
Infective conjunctivitis is an infection of the thin skin (the conjunctiva) on the front of the eye. It is very common and often starts in one eye but then spreads to the other. Conjunctivitis is a very common condition in which one or both eyes b...
1 person found this helpful

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