Have you ever woken up and noticed that your eye is irritated and hard to open? Worst-case scenario, you may be having a pink eye. But there’s nothing to worry about as this eye condition is temporary and can be healed for about 2 to 3 weeks depending on its cause. Though home remedies do not treat pink eyes, it can relieve and soothe the symptoms.
According to Dr. Benjamin Ticho at the University of Illinois, Ear and Eye Infirmary, “pink eye” is a layman’s term used to describe any condition where the eye becomes red from infection. Most commonly, it is known as infectious conjunctivitis. Green or yellow pus discharge usually indicates a bacterial infection, while clear or white discharge is more commonly viral in origin. Itching is most typical of allergic conjunctivitis.
Pink eye caused by infection are unpleasant and contagious. Everyone could be at risk of pink eye but most likely, school-aged kids are exposed to this condition. Since this eye condition is contagious, those who have close contact with infected people are at risk. Pink eye can be easily treated with over-the-counter medications or prescription medicines and with home remedies.
Three Primary Causes of Pink Eye
Pink eye can be caused by three infections. It could be viral, bacterial, or allergens such as pollen.
Viral infections are the most common cause of pink eye. This usually clears up within a few days to 3 weeks much like a cold.
Bacterial infections are easy to distinguish as the affected eye often produces thick pus. These infections last within 2 to 5 days without treatment. However, antibiotic eye drops can speed up the healing process.
Common allergies like pollen, dust, or pet dander can also cause pink eye. Symptoms for pink eye caused by allergens are similar to viral infections. It has a watery discharge and it tends to occur in both eyes. Though, the pink eye will improve once the person clears up the allergens from the eye.
Home Remedies for Pink Eye
Pink eye can be painful. Other than over-the-counter medication and prescription, there are home remedies that may relieve pain. However, while these remedies can effectively soothe and relieve pain, it is still important to consult with your doctor first before using remedies.
Here are some home remedies that you can do when you have pink eye.
Saline, which contains has antimicrobial properties which is the reason why this is one of the most effective home remedies for eye infections. Saline eye drops are similar to teardrops, which are the eye’s way of naturally cleansing itself.
Herbal teas such as green tea, black tea, and chamomile tea have anti-inflammatory properties that can reduce swelling in the eye. Placing cooled tea bags in the affected eyes can soothe the eye. It can also be relaxing.
Using a Cool Compress
Pink eye is painful and irritating. Using a cool compress relieves pain in the affected eye. It can also reduce inflammation of the eye. To use a compress for pink eye, you should soak a clean towel or washcloth in cool or warm water. Squeeze the excess water and place the damp towel to the eye for a few minutes. Once done, remove the damp towel from the eye and wash your hands immediately. You should also not reuse the towel as this can spread the infection.
Over the Counter Eye Drops
Eye Drops help relieve symptoms of pinkeye. It can soothe the burning feeling and irritation in the eye.
Avoid Touching Eyes
Pink eyes are contagious. Touching or rubbing your eyes can make it worse. It may also take longer to clear up. If you touch your eyes, you should immediately wash your hands thoroughly. Also, avoid using contact lense for a while until the pink eye clears up.
Research says that honey is a potential home remedy that can treat eye infection. Honey has antibacterial and antimicrobial properties that may effectively treat eye infection. However, raw honey should not be put on the eye directly. Manuka honey eye drops can be used or you can make your own sterilized honey eye drops
To make your own honey eye drops, boil a cup of water and 5 teaspoons of honey then, stir the mixture well. Let the mixture cool. You may use this as an eyewash or use an eyedropper to put into the affected eye.
Euphrasia Officinalis or eyebright has been used for centuries as treatment for eye infections. Euphrasia eye drops help relieve irritation and dry eyes. Some research showed that participants who used euphrasia eye drops have quickly recovered from pink eye and other participants have seen improvement. Although it may appear that this is an effective remedy, you should refrain from making it by yourself.
How to Avoid Spreading Pink Eye
We must know that pink eye is highly contagious and everyone you come in contact with may be at risk. It is highly recommended that people with these symptoms have to avoid close contact with others, either at school or work. If by chance you caught a pink eye, these are things that you should do to avoid spreading it to others.
- You should stay at home until symptoms of your pink eye clear up.
- You should wash your hands often.
- Avoid rubbing or touching the affected eye.
- You should also change or wash pillowcases, sheets, and comforters to avoid transmitting it to others or reinfecting yourself.
- Use clean towels and wash the used towels immediately.
- For the meantime, you should avoid wearing contact lenses or makeup.
- Also, throw away any makeup that the infection may have contaminated.
Pink eye can be uncomfortable and painful but they are pretty easy to treat. You just need to avoid contact with people to prevent it from spreading. Having good hygiene will prevent you from getting it. These home remedies for pink eye are ways to soothe and relieve the pain. Eye conditions can become serious when not treated right. You should still consult your doctor for better medication.