children back in school, cases of a highly contagious infection called pink eye
(conjunctivitis) are likely to rise, an expert says.
common medical condition is around all year. Since it can spread so easily it's
more common when school is back is session and kids are in close contact and
touching similar surfaces," Dr Khalilah Babino, an urgent care physician
at Loyola University Health System, said in a Loyola news release.
Pinkeye is a
hassle for students, parents and teachers, the release noted. The condition
occurs when the conjunctiva – a membrane that lines the inner surface of the
eyelids and white portions of the eye – become red and swollen due to
to popular belief pink eye is not always due to a bacterial infection. It can
also be caused by viruses, allergens and irritants. These types of
conjunctivitis will typically resolve spontaneously without additional
treatment," Babino said.
noted that bacterial conjunctivitis is extremely contagious and can quickly
spread through a household or classroom.
conjunctivitis can be the result of infection from one of several bacterial
organisms. Transmission is from person to person contact, secretions from an
affected person or infected surfaces. If you suspect you have this type of
infection it's best to see your medical provider as soon as possible,"
the following tips for preventing and dealing with bacterial pink eye:
Wash your hands frequently with
warm soapy water for at least 15 to 20 seconds each time.
Use alcohol sanitizer when water
and soap are not available.
Avoid eye make-up during an
infection and throw out any used eye make-up, as it probably is contaminated.
Take out contact lenses and wear
glasses instead until the infection is cleared.
Thoroughly clean your contact lens
case and throw out disposable contacts.
Avoid touching your eyes with your
fingers – this is how conjunctivitis is commonly transmitted from one eye to
the other Avoid school or work until you have
had at least 24 hours of treatment with antibiotics
Academy of Ophthalmology has more about pink eye.