Why You Should Watch Out For Pink Eye During Spring Sports

Kids playing soccer

Does your child play sports? Are you worried that they will get hurt while they play?

Playing sports teaches players all sorts of characteristics like how to be a team player, developing a strong work ethic, agility, and more. But while playing a sport there is always the risk of getting hurt or catching a cold that’s going around the locker room.

Besides getting the cold that’s going around, it is also possible to pass on different eye diseases, like pink eye. Keep reading to learn more about pink eye and why you should watch out for it during sports season!

What is pink eye?

There is a mucous membrane in your eye that covers the white part of your eye and lines the inside of your eyelid. This membrane is called the conjunctiva.

When the conjunctiva becomes infected, irritated, or swollen, the tiny blood vessels in it become larger. When this occurs, it makes the blood vessels more noticeable, so the white part of your eye looks pink or red.

This is how pink eye got its name. It’s more formally known as conjunctivitis.

What are the signs and symptoms of pink eye?

There is a range of signs and symptoms connected to pink eye. They are dependent on the amount of inflammation and redness the white part of your eye or eyelids are experiencing.

Signs and symptoms include:

  • Itchy eyes
  • Experiencing a burning sensation
  • Tearing
  • Discomfort
  • Eye pain
  • Light sensitivity
  • Eye discharge that’s green, yellow, or white
  • Crusty eyelashes
  • Blurry vision

Are there different types of pink eye to be aware of?

Yes, there are different types of pink eye that have differing causes. While many things can irritate the eye, having pink eye usually means that the conjunctiva has become inflamed. The three main causes are:

Viral Pink Eye

Viral pink eye is a lot like a cold because it’s caused by a virus. The most well-known symptoms are itchy eyes, red and watery eyes, and a sensitivity to light.

Symptoms are usually more severe the first 3 to 5 days and disappear over the course of two weeks. You may also experience cold-like symptoms with viral pink eye.

Bacterial Pink Eye

This kind of pink eye develops because of bacteria, making it extremely contagious. Symptoms of bacterial pink eye include red eyes and a discharge that is yellow or green/yellow in color.

It affects both eyes, and patients can also have cold-like symptoms at the same time. This type of pink eye requires antibiotics to treat and lasts for one to two weeks.

It is most likely to cause vision problems when left untreated. It spreads by people with infected hands coming into contact with their eyes.

Allergic Pink Eye

With allergic pink eye, there is a connection to common allergens like pollen, dander, and dust. Symptoms include red, itchy, and watery eyes.

It is not contagious and impacts both eyes. Medicine can be used to improve symptoms.

Why should I look out for pink eye during the sports season?

The most contagious type of pink eye is the bacterial type. If your child touches something with bacteria on it and then touches their eyes and things in the locker room, they’ll spread it.

Pink eye is highly contagious, so it is important to be on the lookout for any signs or symptoms.

Do you think that you have pink eye? If so, reach out to the team at Mid Ohio Eye in Columbus, OH today to schedule an appointment!