Pink Eye Treatment in Northern VA
Pink eye, also known as conjunctivitis, is an inflammation of the conjunctiva, the transparent mucous lining that protects the eye white and the inside of the eyelid. It is a common and treatable eye condition that affects about 3 million people in the US per year.
Pink eye may affect one or both eyes at a time. Treatment will depend on the cause of the inflammation, although medical attention isn’t always necessary.
What Causes Pink Eye?
Any of the following can cause pink eye:
- Viruses – viruses often linked to pink eye include adenoviruses, respiratory viruses, and the herpes virus
- Bacteria – culprits include the bacteria responsible for staph infections, pneumonia, meningitis, and gonorrhea
- Allergens – pet dander, pollen, and dust mites are common examples
- Physical or chemical irritants
What are the Symptoms of Pink Eye?
The following symptoms are usually present when a person is suffering from pink eye:
- Redness and swelling
- Itching and irritation
- Increased tear production or a white, yellow, or green discharge
- Crust formation along the lash line
If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, visiting an eye doctor is your best course of action. This is especially true if you have a weakened immune system or any pre-existing eye conditions that may put you at risk of complications.
Pink eye can be contagious or lead to complications. Early diagnosis and treatment are keys to helping prevent its spread and mitigate its effects.
How is Pink Eye Diagnosed and Treated?
During your eye exam, your doctor will ask a series of questions to check if your symptoms correspond with pink eye. In some cases, laboratory analysis or allergy testing may be needed.
It’s important to know that most cases of (untreated) pink eye resolve themselves within two weeks and that treatments are often only meant to relieve symptoms or accelerate healing.
- Viral Pink Eye – antiviral medication (rarely prescribed except for herpes simplex)
- Bacterial Pink Eye – antibiotics
- Allergic Pink Eye – antihistamines, anti-inflammatory agents, steroids, decongestants, mast cell stabilizers
- Pink Eye Due to Irritation – thorough and immediate flushing
To relieve dryness and soreness, eye drops (artificial tears) and cold packs are often used.
Get Treated for Pink Eye Today
If you need an eye doctor in Reston, Alexandria, Arlington, or Falls Church, call us to make an appointment at one of our four convenient locations:
Alexandria – Phone: (703) 660-9494
Arlington – Phone: (703) 413-1400
Falls Church – Phone: (703) 573-1200
Reston – Phone: (703) 467-9080
You can also use our online appointment request form while you are here on our website.