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Conjunctivitis

Conjunctivitis is where your eyes are red and sore. It's usually caused by an infection or allergy.

Conjunctivitis usually makes your eyes red, itchy and uncomfortable.

Conjunctivitis usually gets better on its own. Washing your eyelids with clean water can help. You may need antibiotics if it's caused by bacteria.

To avoid spreading conjunctivitis, avoid rubbing your eyes, wash your hands regularly and avoid sharing towels and pillows.

Read more on the NHS website.

Conjunctivitis usually makes your eyes red, itchy and uncomfortable.

Check if you have conjunctivitis

Conjunctivitis is also known as red or pink eye.

It usually affects both eyes and makes them:

Conjunctivitis 1
Conjunctivitis that produces sticky pus is contagious.

Conjunctivitis 2
If eyes are red and feel gritty, the conjunctivitis is also usually contagious.

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Conjunctivitis 3
Conjunctivitis caused by allergies like hay fever makes eyes red and watery but is not contagious.

Read more on the NHS website.

Conjunctivitis usually gets better on its own. Washing your eyelids with clean water can help. You may need antibiotics if it's caused by bacteria.

Self-care

There are things you can do to help ease your symptoms.

  • Boil water and let it cool down before you gently wipe your eyelashes to clean off crusts with a clean cotton wool pad (1 piece for each eye).
  • Hold a cold flannel on your eyes for a few minutes to cool them down.

Do not wear contact lenses until your eyes are better.

Medical treatments

Treatment will depend on the cause of your conjunctivitis.

If it's a bacterial infection, you might be prescribed antibiotics. But these will not work if it's caused by a virus (viral conjunctivitis) or an allergy.

Some sexually transmitted infections (STIs) can cause conjunctivitis. This type takes longer to get better.

Read more on the NHS website.

To avoid spreading conjunctivitis, avoid rubbing your eyes, wash your hands regularly and avoid sharing towels and pillows.

Read more on the NHS website.