Are your eyes itching? Itchy, red eyes can be very uncomfortable. Here are a few conditions that may cause itchy eyes:
Conjunctivitis or "Pink Eye"
Conjunctivitis, or pink eye, is an inflammation of the conjunctiva. The conjunctiva is a clear mucus membrane that lines the inside of the eyelid and covers the white part of the eye. Pink eye is a term commonly used to refer to all types of conjunctivitis. Pink eye is a fairly common condition, especially among school-aged children. Children are usually sent home from school if pink eye is suspected, as it can be very contagious and may spread quickly. Pink eye rarely causes long-term vision or eye damage, but it can make the eye extremely red. There are several types of conjunctivitis. It is important to have an eye doctor evaluate the condition to determine proper treatment.
Pinkeye - Home Treatment
Home treatment for pinkeye will help reduce your pain and keep your eye free of drainage. If you wear contacts, remove them and wear glasses until your symptoms have gone away completely. Thoroughly clean your contacts and storage case.
Cold compresses or warm compresses (whichever feels best) can be used. If an allergy is the problem, a cool compress may feel better. If the pinkeye is caused by an infection, a warm, moist compress may soothe your eye and help reduce redness and swelling. Warm, moist compresses can spread infection from one eye to the other. Use a different compress for each eye, and use a clean compress for each application.
When cleaning your eye, wipe from the inside (next to the nose) toward the outside. Use a clean surface for each wipe so that drainage being cleaned away is not rubbed back across the eye. If tissues or wipes are used, make sure they are put in the trash and not allowed to sit around. If washcloths are used to clean the eye, put them in the laundry right away so that no one else picks them up or uses them. After wiping your eye, wash your hands to prevent the pinkeye from spreading.
After pinkeye has been diagnosed:
Causes; Pink eye can result from the following, with viruses being the most common trigger:
Blepharitis is a common condition causing flaky eyelids. It is a common problem in both children and adults. The condition produces flaky debris at the bases of the eyelashes. Blepharitis is an uncomfortable condition, usually producing inflamed and itchy eyelids, but it doesn't permanently damage eyesight.
Blepharitis commonly causes red, crusty eyelids. If you have blepharitis, your symptoms are probably most noticeable upon awakening in the morning.
Blepharitis is a chronic condition. There is no cure for this condition, but it can be treated. Probably the best way to treat blepharitis is with good eyelid hygiene, including regularly cleaning the lids and lashes and eyelid scrubs. In addition to hygiene, some doctors may prescribe antibiotics or other medications to help control the condition.
What you should know
If you experience symptoms of blepharitis, schedule an appointment with your eye doctor. Sometimes the symptoms of blepharitis are very similar to those of dry eye syndrome, another bothersome eye condition. An eye doctor will diagnose your condition and give you ways to help manage it.
Many cases of blepharitis are the result of poor eyelid hygiene. Other common causes of blepharitis include the following:
If you have blepharitis, adopting a eyelid hygiene routine will help control your symptoms. Strive to keep your eyelids clean and crust-free. If your blepharitis symptoms are severe, your eye doctor may need to prescribe antibiotics or steroid eyedrops.
Eye allergies, called allergic conjunctivitis, are a common condition that occurs when the eyes react to something that irritates them (called an allergen). The eyes produce a substance called histamine to fight off the allergen. As a result, the eyelids and conjunctiva — the thin, filmy membrane that covers the inside of your eyelids and the white part of your eye (sclera) — become red, swollen and itchy, with tearing and burning. Unlike bacterial or viral conjunctivitis, allergic conjunctivitis is not spread from person to person.
Typical symptoms include:
• Watery eyes
• Sensitivity to light
• Eyelid swelling
These symptoms can occur alone or along with allergic rhinitis nasal symptoms. They typically appear shortly after exposure to the allergen.
Symptoms resulting from seasonal outdoor allergens tend to be worse than if your symptoms are due to indoor allergens such as dust mites or pet dander.
Symptoms may be reduced if you are taking allergy medications such as antihistamines, which suppress the allergic reaction.
Treating eye allergies with eyedrops and medicine
Artificial tear drops can help relieve eye allergies temporarily by washing allergens from the eye. They also relieve dry, irritated eyes by adding moisture. These drops, available without a prescription, can be used as often as you need them.
Decongestants (with or without antihistamines)
Decongestants reduce redness in the eyes from allergies. They are available as over-the-counter eyedrops. They may be sold simply as a decongestant or as a decongestant with an antihistamine, which relieves eye itchiness. These types of eyedrops should not be used for more than two to three days, as longer-term use actually increases your irritating symptoms.
Eyedrops with both an antihistamine to relieve itchiness and a mast-cell stabilizer help prevent eye allergies. They are used twice a day to relieve itching, redness, tearing and burning.
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
This Information has been originally posted (source) from : http://www.webmd.com/eye-health/tc/pinkeye-home-treatment / http://vision.about.com/od/sportsvision/a/Conjunctivitis.htm / American Optometric Association, Conjunctivitis. AOA. 3 Jun 2007. / http://vision.about.com/od/sportsvision/a/Blepharitis.htm / Lavine, Jay B., MD. "The Eye Care Source Book." Contemporary Books, 2001.