Many people believe that the main symptom of conjunctivitis or pinkeye is a reddish color in the whites of the eyes. This is true for only one form of the illness, however.
The reddish tint is the result of a viral infection, and there are many other symptoms to look out for. What can start out as a cold or the flu or seem like these illnesses can develop into conjunctivitis as the infection spreads? It is important to be informed of the signs of conjunctivitis, especially parents since children often come down with this highly contagious infection from school or other communal activities.
Detecting the condition early is essential because it is highly contagious and spreads rapidly among children and families. When you or a loved one has runny noses, sinuses, headaches, or fever, always check the eyes for discharge or redness to make sure conjunctivitis has not developed. If you see any of these signs, it is important to go to a physician for medication or advice about what other steps you should be taken to prevent the condition from worsening or spreading. Being on the alert is the key to the swift treatment of conjunctivitis.
1. Eye Redness
One of the reasons conjunctivitis is often called “pinkeye” is because of the telltale sign of a pink or red color to the eye. However, this is the symptom of only the viral form of conjunctivitis. The other two forms–bacterial and allergic–may not have this symptom and, therefore, it may not always be obvious that someone has conjunctivitis. Redness in the eyes can be the result of eye strain, excessive rubbing, or injury, but if the pink or red color does not go away, it may be time to get checked for conjunctivitis.