ZocdocAnswersWhat is the best way to get rid of pink eye?

Question

What is the best way to get rid of pink eye?

I have pink eye I am sure. What is the best way to get rid of it. Do you need something from a doctor or is there just something at home that will make it go away fast?

Answer

Pink eye, as you probably know, is a form of eye infection (it is also called infectious conjunctivitis). Symptoms include a painful "gritty" feeling in the eye, eye drainage, blurry vision, and redness of the white part of the eye. In adults most cases of pink eye are caused by various viral infections. These tend to be self resolving and do not need any specific medication to speed up healing. Generally, they are treated with warm compresses to the eye and good hand hygiene (the drainage from the involved eye is full of virus and can easily spread the infection to your other eye or to another person). However, there are some cases of conjunctivitis that are caused by bacteria, and these should be treated with an antibiotic, usually just a topical antibiotic eye drop or eye ointment. Typically the conjunctivitis that is caused by a bacteria infection results in larger amounts of thick eye drainage and increased redness and pain. You should see your primary care doctor about this issue. They will be able to examine your eye and help determine whether or not your infection would benefit from a prescription for antibiotics. Good luck, and I hope you are feeling better soon!

This answer is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice.

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