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My eyes are red and irritated - What's the deal?

There are many causes for red eyes. Analyzing your symptoms may help you diagnose your problem and potentially reach a solution. If you feel you suffer from one of these conditions, please make an appointment for an evaluation at 661-253-3888.
We can help give you the relief you desire. Here are four common ailments:

Allergies: Allergic conjunctivitis many times presents like dry eyes, but can be a little more severe. Typically, both eyes are involved. Vision clarity is usually not affected. The eyes are typically red, swollen, itchy, with a scant amount of mucous discharge. Symptoms may persist for a longer period of time, as long as the eyes are in contact with the allergen.

Treatment: There are some very good prescription medications that can be used chronically with no side effects. These medications can give you total relief from all symptoms.

Allergic Conjunctivitis

Viral Infection: Typically referred to as "Pink Eye". Usually will affect both eyes. Typically, these eyes exhibit diffuse redness with a lot of swelling on the white part of the eye. The eyes will look glossy, and will tear excessively. Vision may be affected, and the eyes will feel very uncomfortable. Due to the contagious nature of this condition, if children are affected, they should be kept out of contact with their peers.

Treatment: Since there is no real cure for a virus, we try to treat the symptoms, and make the eye feel as comfortable as possible. The condition will usually run its course and be gone in days to weeks.


Viral Conjunctivitis
Dryness: In the age of computers and jobs that require more reading, dryness is a very big problem. When we perform these tasks, our blink rate slows down and there is more opportunity for your tear film to evaporate into the air. Dry eyes are typically described as diffusely red, typically both eyes. The person may experience a stinging or burning sensation. Generally, vision clarity remains unchanged, and there is little if any mucous discharge. Contact lens wearers may be less comfortable because there are fewer tears in the eyes to support and cushion their natural movement.

Treatment: Tear replacement therapy with a well known over the counter drop will alleviate your symptoms as well as practicing good visual hygiene, like taking frequent breaks from your computer to look around and allow your blink rate to resume its normal pattern.

Dry Eyes
Bacterial Infection: More common in the contact lens wearing population. Bacterial infection typically will affect one eye at a time. Redness can vary from slight to very severe. Generally you will experience a large amount of mucous discharge, even to the point where the eye will be sealed shut with crusty discharge upon waking. The vision clarity is usually reduced in the affected eye, and the eye will typically be painful and very sensitive to light.

Treatment: Prescription antibiotic drops will clear the condition in a few days. Be sure to remind the practitioner if you have any known allergies to antibiotics at the time of the visit. The person, if a contact lens wearer, should abstain from wearing their contact lenses until treatment is complete.

Bacterial Conjunctivitis

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