At one time or another almost all of us has experienced red, itchy, runny or sticky eyes and have wondered whether it’s a symptom of allergies or dry eyes or a more serious condition, such as an eye infection. To help you be a more knowledgeable participant in your care we have provided some useful facts and information.
About Allergies & Dry Eyes
Symptoms of Allergies or Dry Eyes
- If you work at a computer for an extended time or have allergies to products or airborne substances, you may experience dry, red or irritated eyes.
- Generally allergies and dry eyes affects both eyes.
- Treatment options usually include resting your eyes or using an over-the-counter or prescription eye drops, as recommended by your eye doctor.
About Eye Infections
Symptoms of Eye Infections
- Frequently occurs when bacteria, fungi or viruses attack any part of your eye, including the surface, membrane lining of the outer eye and inner eyelid, interior portions or the soft tissue of the eyelid.
- Infections inside the eye or in the soft tissue of the eyelid are the most dangerous and if left untreated, the condition may spread throughout the eye.
- Symptoms usually include redness, pain, discharge, watering and sensitivity to light; usually occurs only in one eye; if symptoms are detected, immediately contact your eye doctor for an evaluation
Types of Eye Infections
- Pink Eye (Conjunctivitis)-A common infection that is highly contagious.
- Viral Keratitis-Can be simply related to a respiratory virus or cold or more serious such as Ocular Herpes that occurs when exposed to the Herpes Simplex Virus.
- Fungal Keratitis-A fungus commonly found in organic matter such as soil, leaves or branches of a tree.
- Acanthamoeba Keratitis-A parasite that attacks the eye more often in individuals wearing contact lenses and swimming in pools, lakes, ponds, hot tubs or streams who are at increased risk for contracting this infection.
- Trachoma-Usually found in underdeveloped countries. Typically infects the inner eyelid along with eyelashes touching the area can infect the cornea and cause permanent blindness.
- Endophthalmitis-Occurs with a penetrating eye injury or complication following eye surgery and if left untreated, may lead to blindness.
Preventing Eye Infections
- If you experience symptoms associated with an eye infection, contact The Eye Clinic of Texas immediately. Prompt treatment is necessary to reduce the risk of permanent blindness.
- To avoid eye infections, wash your hands throughout the day, especially if you are near an individual with a red eye or other signs of infection. Contact lens wearers should follow care and handling instructions provided by their eye doctor.
If you or someone you know is concerned about having an eye infections please call The Eye Clinic of Texas, an affiliate of Houston Eye Associates, at 800-423-3937, visit The Eye Clinic of Texas or facebook.com/ecot.lasik.
The Eye Clinic of Texas is an affiliate of Houston Eye Associates, the largest ophthalmology clinic in the nation. We are a leading eye care practice serving the greater Houston, Galveston, League City and Texas City with offices at 1100 Gulf Freeway, Suite 114, League City, Texas 77573, 7111 Medical Center Drive, Suite 110, Texas City, Texas 77590 and 2302 Avenue P, Galveston, Texas.