Conjunctivitis, popularly known as Apollo in Nigeria, is an inflammation of the conjunctiva, which is the superficial layer of the white part of the eyeball. Conjunctivitis is commonly caused by a viral infection, or less commonly, a bacterial infection. It can also be caused by an allergic reaction to certain allergens such as Dust Mites or Pollen.
Viral conjunctivitis often heals on its own within one to two weeks. However, it is typically contagious and associated with flu-like symptoms and may require an antibiotic treatment prescribed by a doctor.
Symptoms of Conjunctivitis (Apollo)
The symptoms manifest within a day or two of infection. The most common symptoms include
- Frequent mucus discharge from the eyes
- Painful red eyes
- Excessive tearing
- Eyelids sticking together
- Light sensitivity
- Sore eyes
- Swelling of eyelids
- Gritty feeling, especially when blinking
- Discharge that forms a crust-like structure around the eyelids preventing it from opening
- Constant tearing up
Some people might also feel feverish or experience blurry vision.
Causes of Conjunctivitis (Apollo)
The reasons for the occurrence of Conjunctivitis can range from a reaction to allergens, or even bacterial or viral components. To understand how to deal with sore eyes, you must first know what causes the problem.
Viral or Bacterial Conjunctivitis: Viral or Bacterial Conjunctivitis can affect either one or both eyes. Watery discharge is often seen in Viral Conjunctivitis. In Bacterial Conjunctivitis, a thicker, yellow-green-like discharge is seen. These symptoms are often can be confused with cold or respiratory infection symptoms. However, both of the causes are highly contagious. Therefore care must be taken to prevent it from spreading
Allergic Conjunctivitis: Allergic Conjunctivitis often affects both eyes, as a reaction to allergens. To combat these allergens, your body will create antibodies, known as immunoglobulin E (IgE), which in turn trigger the specialised cells known as mast and histamines. These specialised cells, in turn, produce allergy signs and symptoms.
Conjunctivitis resulting from irritation: Certain chemicals or foreign objects in the eye can also lead to Conjunctivitis. As your body naturally reacts to the disposal of these irritants, symptoms of conjunctivitis will arise.
Consequences of Conjunctivitis: While Conjunctivitis itself is not dangerous, it is the symptoms that can lead to permanent damage to the cornea. This, in turn, can affect your vision. Prompt evaluation and treatment will reduce the risks and chances associated with this complication.
Treatment of Conjunctivitis (Apollo)
The treatment for Conjunctivitis depends on the cause of the disorder. After a thorough diagnosis, your doctor can prescribe:
- Antibiotic eye drops or ointments for bacterial conjunctivitis also help to speed up the healing process
- While there is no treatment for Viral Conjunctivitis, antiviral medication may be recommended in most cases; however, Viral Conjunctivitis tends to clear up on its own
- For Allergic Conjunctivitis, eye drops may be provided to control the allergic reaction or control the inflammation
At the same time, ensure that you maintain basic hygiene habits so as to prevent the spreading of any bacterial or Viral Conjunctivitis. Avoid sharing towels, clothing items, makeup or eye drops.
It is best to have a medical check-up when you experience any of these symptoms, as these are also symptoms for many other ailments. Doctors might also give a prescription to help ease the discomfort. Avoid local home remedies like breast milk, urine, salt water or soap, these can damage the eye. Traditional remedies could also lead to permanent damage.