By adulthood, odds are you’ve had pink eye, or conjunctivitis, at least once in your life. Whether or not you’ve had it yourself, it’s important to recognize the signs and symptoms so you can get the care you need or call a physician for your child. Pink eye affects around six million people in the United States every year, driving many to seek urgent care for fast evaluations and low-wait treatment.

Pink eye can be extremely contagious especially if eye discharge is present. That’s why telehealth is ideal for managing conjunctivitis. Based in Dacula, Georgia, Virtually Urgent Healthcare invites you to book a telemedicine sick visit and avoid an in-person office visit altogether. Medical director and physician assistant Rolandine Vaughan, PA-C, MPAS, can evaluate your symptoms during a video call and prescribe antibiotics if you or your child needs them.

Not sure whether you’re dealing with pink eye or some other eye condition? Look for these top five common symptoms of conjunctivitis:

1. Distinctive eye redness

One of the hallmark signs of pink eye is the redness and irritation of the eye, hence the name “pink eye.” The blood vessels in the conjunctiva, the clear membrane that covers the white part of your eye, become inflamed, and this causes the white of your eye to appear red or pink. This redness can range from mild to severe and may affect one or both eyes.

2. Eye watering or discharge

Pink eye often leads to excessive tearing or a discharge from the eye. The type of discharge can vary depending on the cause of pink eye. Viral conjunctivitis typically produces a clear, watery discharge, while bacterial conjunctivitis may result in a thicker yellow or green discharge. When discharge dries, it becomes tacky and can make your eyelid stick together.

3. Itching and burning

Many people with pink eye experience itching and a burning sensation in the affected eye(s). This can be especially bothersome and may lead to frequent rubbing of the eyes, which can exacerbate the condition and increase the risk of spreading the infection. When you have pink eye or suspected pink eye, it’s important to resist the urge to rub your eyes even if they’re extremely itchy.

4. Swollen eyelids

Swelling of the eyelids is another common symptom of pink eye, particularly when pink eye comes from allergies. The eyelids may become puffy and occasionally difficult to open due to the swelling.

5. Light sensitivity

In some cases of pink eye, you can experience light sensitivity. Bright lights can cause discomfort and pain in the affected eye(s) upon being opened. To manage this symptom, you can dim the lighting indoors or wear sunglasses while venturing outside.

Get the urgent care you need today

Pink eye may be highly uncomfortable, but there are treatments for all types including bacterial, viral, and allergy-related conjunctivitis. To get the care you or your child needs, call Virtually Urgent Healthcare for on-demand telehealth or book an appointment online today.

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