Your alarm goes off, and you can tell something feels off before you even open your eyes. Yesterday, your eye felt itchy, but today it feels heavy, and you have difficulty opening it. When you make it to the bathroom, you discover your eye looks inflamed, red, and it’s leaking discharge. Could these symptoms be signs of a bacterial eye infection?
If you are suffering from any eye pain, you might jump to feeling anxious right away. However, knowing what to look out for before you suspect an eye infection can help you decide to schedule an eye appointment with your eye doctor.
What Causes a Bacterial Infection in the Eye?
There are many different types of bacterial eye infections. Still, as the name suggests, a bacterium causes the infection, no matter what type of bacterial infection you may have. Bacterial eye infections are often inconvenient and uncomfortable but typically harmless to your eyes after treatment. However, they can cause more damage if left untreated, and some infections can be more serious in nature.
What Are Some Signs of a Bacterial Eye Infection?
One of the most common bacterial eye infections is conjunctivitis, also known as pink eye. As such, you may not be surprised to learn that many symptoms associated with bacterial conjunctivitis are associated with most bacterial eye infections.
- Itchy eyes
- Watery eyes or discharge coming from the eyes
- The whites of the eyes are red or pinkish
- Pain or burning in the eyes
- Light sensitivity
- Eyelids that hurt to the touch
- The feeling of something in your eye
Unfortunately, many symptoms associated with bacterial eye infections are also associated with viral eye infections. So, if you have any of these symptoms, the best thing to do is to have an eye doctor examine your eye and determine if it is viral or bacterial.
Are Styes Bacterial Eye Infections?
A stye is a bacterial eye infection affecting the eyelid’s oil glands. With styes, you might not experience symptoms aside from the stye itself. They can go away on their own, but they sometimes require treatment.
What’s the Difference Between a Bacterial Eye Infection and a Viral Eye Infection?
The primary difference between viral and bacterial eye infections is how they are treated. A viral infection of the eye usually has no prescribed cure; you can only treat the symptoms. Unlike viral infections, however, bacterial infections are often treated with antibiotics.
In some cases of bacterial eye infections, you may receive antibiotic drops to put in your eye to help cure the issue. In either case, you may receive eye drops from your eye doctor to relieve the pain or itchiness associated with either type of infection.
What Should I Do with Eye Makeup After an Eye Infection?
After an eye infection, you should replace any makeup used when you had the infection. Eye makeup is notorious for harboring germs, and if you use your makeup or eye brushes after an eye infection, you risk reinfecting yourself.
Also, remember never to share makeup products with others, especially those products that go near your eyes, because the risk of an eye infection increases when you swap germs through your makeup or makeup brushes.
Do I Need to Change My Contact Lenses After an Eye Infection?
If you have an eye infection, you have likely switched to glasses to wear for the duration of the infection. However, any contact lenses that you may have used during the infection should be disposed of immediately. It would help if you also disposed of any contact lens cases you may have used to store your lenses during the infection.
When Should I Schedule an Eye Appointment?
Temporarily itchy, red eyes might be allergies or a reaction to some other irritation. But when your red, itchy eyes last for a few days or are coupled with any other viral or bacterial infection symptoms, it is best to have them checked by an eye care professional.
If you suspect you have a bacterial eye infection, it is crucial to schedule an appointment as soon as possible. While many bacterial eye infections can be harmless after treatment, some are dangerous and can cause permanent damage to your eyes or even vision loss if you do not get the infection treated in time. Having your eyes checked out and treated quickly can ensure your eyes stay healthy and function the way they’re supposed to for a long time!
Turn to Campus Eye Center for Any Bacterial Eye Infection Concerns
If you feel that you may have a bacterial eye infection or an eye issue of any kind, it’s always best to have a professional opinion. Schedule an appointment with the experts here at Campus Eye Center to keep your eyes healthy and ensure you get the treatment you need for any eye ailment. Get in touch with us today!