What is Eye Flu?
January 16, 2024
Despite being the most delicate organ in the body, eye health is frequently overlooked. Our fast-paced environment is full of visuals, digital devices, and other contaminants that can lead to a variety of eye-related problems. “Eye flu,” or viral conjunctivitis, is one such issue.
What is Eye Flu?
Viral conjunctivitis, also referred to as “eye flu,” is an infection that causes discomfort ,stings, and reddens the eyes. This infection is common in the monsoon season because it is easy for bacteria and viruses to get into our eyes and trigger many kinds of eye problems.
The extremely infectious eye flu can cause excruciating eye swelling. This infection is more common in children . It’s critical to take the required safety measures to stop this infection from circulating.
How is Eye Flu Caused?
Understanding the causes of eye flu is crucial due to its high contagiousness. The main causes of eye flu are:
- Viruses: Adenoviruses, which also cause the common cold and flu, are the cause of the majority of cases of flu in the eyes. Viral conjunctivitis typically affects both eyes and can cause photosensitivity, fluid-like discharge, irritation, and inflammation.
- Bacteria: Two types of bacteria that can cause bacterial conjunctivitis are Staphylococcus aureus and Streptococcus pneumoniae. It may occur from sharing soiled objects, not washing your hands, or touching your eyes with unclean hands. Bacterial conjunctivitis can cause more severe symptoms than viral conjunctivitis.Taking the appropriate antibiotics can help bacterial conjunctivitis resolve in a matter of days.
- Allergies: Allergic reactions can cause red, itchy, and watery eyes. Allergens such as dust mites, pet dander, cosmetics and pollen interact with the immune system and can result in allergic conjunctivitis.
- Chemicals and irritants: Exposure of the conjunctiva to chemicals or irritants can result in chemical conjunctivitis. The intensity of the irritation and the kind of irritant involved determine how long chemical conjunctivitis lasts. These particles include pollution, smoke, and pool chlorine, among others. You might experience irritation and redness in your eyes as a result of these irritants.
What are the Symptoms of Eye Flu/Conjunctivitis?
The causes of eye flu,commonly known as conjunctivitis, can vary, as can the symptoms. Yet these are a few typical indications of conjunctivitis:
- Redness occurs on the inner lid or the white of the eye.
- Having scratchy or gritty sensations in the eye.
- Watery or mucus-like discharge from the eyes.
- Inflamed eyelids.
- Hazy vision.
- Crusted eyelids or lashes, particularly in the morning.
Potential Risk Factors for Eye Flu
Eye flu may occur for a number of reasons. Here are a few examples of the many prevalent ones:
- Exposing yourself to someone who has either a bacterial or viral conjunctivitis infection, as it is highly contagious.
- Coming in contact with any kind of allergen.
- Putting on dirty or ill-fitting contact lenses.
- Not cleaning your hands and frequently touching your eyes.
- Using contaminated tissues and towels.
- Putting on eye makeup that has become contaminated
Tips to prevent Eye Flu
It may be helpful to prevent eye flu in order to minimise the discomfort and stress that it brings. Here are a few useful hints to avoid getting eye flu:
- Wash your hands frequently, especially if you have symptoms of the flu. Avoid touching your eyes too often.
- Aim to postpone wearing contact lenses until the eye flu has cleared up.
- Always remember to sanitise your contact lenses after using them.
- Don’t wear eye makeup.
- To prevent the infection from spreading, do not share towels or clothing.
- When taking medication, abide by your doctor’s instructions.
- As inadequate ventilation increases the risk of infection, make sure that closed-off spaces, such as offices or bedrooms, have enough airflow.
Tips to take care of Eye Flu
Here are some first-aid recommendations for managing ocular flu:
- Hand wash a lot. To stop the spread of infection, don’t share washcloths, towels, eye drops, or makeup with other people.
- If you wear glasses, be sure to wash them with a mild soap and water to get rid of any possible impurities.
- Refrain from touching or rubbing your eyes as this can aggravate the flu and possibly transfer the infection to other people or the other eye.
- If you usually wear contacts and you have conjunctivitis, wear glasses instead of contacts until the infection goes away.
- If you have the eye flu, stay away from applying eye makeup.
- You can ease pain and minimise swelling by placing ice packs or a clean, warm compress over your closed eyes.
Prevention is the best line of defence against eye flu. Avoiding touching the eyes and washing your hands often are two preventative measures that can help a lot with this illness. If you experience any of the previously listed symptoms, you must get treatment as soon as possible.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Is a visit to the doctor required for the treatment of the eye flu?
Even though eye flu is usually not too serious, it can sometimes cause more serious vision problems. Seek professional help and visit a physician to ensure prompt treatment.
2. How widespread is the eye flu?
The eye flu is a contagious disease that can transfer from one individual to another. No matter where you are, you have to practise good hygiene and avoid close or direct contact.
3. Can the eye flu be treated at home?
A minor case of eye flu can be treated at home. If, after a week, the irritation and pain in your eyes don’t go away or get worse, you should see a doctor.