Eye infections can be uncomfortable as they trigger symptoms such as pain, redness, itching, and blurry vision. They usually affect different eye parts, with each type of infection requiring different treatments.
Most minor eye infections heal on their own, but others may be more serious and lead to permanent vision loss. It is crucial to get treatment if you experience eye or vision changes. Find out the different types of eye infections and how to prevent them.
Conjunctivitis is often known as pink eye, the most common type of eye infection. It is an inflammation or condition of the conjunctiva. This is the thin tissue covering the inner eyelids and the white of the eyes.
The infection can impact one or both eyes, with types that include viral, bacterial, gonococcal, allergic, and chlamydial. Treating the underlying cause can help prevent conjunctivitis. It is crucial to get immediate treatment to avoid spreading pink eye.
A stye is an eyelid infection usually affecting an oil gland or eyelash follicle. Touching the eye with unwashed hands can transfer bacteria, causing a stye to form. The stye may occur inside the eyelid edge or on the eyelash line.
Symptoms include a painful red bump or a bump that looks like a boil or pimple. Patients experience itchiness or soreness in the area. Often, styes clear with home remedies such as a warm compress.
Blepharitis is an eyelid inflammation caused by allergies, bacterial infections, clogged oil glands, and certain skin conditions. Types of the infection include anterior blepharitis and posterior blepharitis.
Home care remedies, such as regular eyelid cleaning using water and baby shampoo, can help. Treating underlying conditions such as rosacea and dandruff can help prevent blepharitis. Severe cases require treatment using antibiotics or steroids.
Keratitis is an infection or inflammation of the clear outer layer of the eye (cornea). Failing to treat the condition can lead to scarring and permanent vision loss. Improper contact lens use, care, and storage can increase the risk of developing keratitis. Types include herpes keratitis, parasitic keratitis, bacterial keratitis, and fungal keratitis. Prevention and treatment of underlying conditions can help prevent keratitis. Various medications help treat infections.
Endophthalmitis is an infection of the inner eye tissue or fluid. If not treated promptly, it can lead to blindness. The most common cause of the condition is cataract surgery. Types include exogenous endophthalmitis due to surgery, surgery, or injection and endogenous endophthalmitis caused by an infection in another body apart. Antifungal or antibiotic injections help treat the condition. In some cases, emergency surgery may be required.
Cellulitis is a fungal or bacterial infection that can affect the skin and eyes. The types that affect the eyes are preseptal cellulitis, which affects the eyelids, and orbital cellulitis, which affects the eyeball. It causes bulging of the eye or swelling of the eyelid. It can cause symptoms such as difficulty moving the eye, vision changes, fever, and fatigue.
The condition is often treated using antibiotics. Severe cases may need surgery to drain fluid from the eye. While some eye infections respond well to home care, others require medical treatment. If you have an eye infection, it is essential to contact an eye doctor.
For more on the different types of eye infections and how to prevent them, visit Grove Eye Care at our Richmond or Midlothian, Virginia office. Call (804) 353-3937 or (804) 888-8998 to schedule an appointment today.