I have had eye infections at least 5 times. They come for many reasons. It might be because you didn’t get your mascara/eyeliner/makeup off before going to bed, unhygienic handling of contact lens, sleeping with contact lens in, rubbing your eye with dirty hands, using a mascara that has expired (sadly this was my case on two occasions!) etc. The most common eye infection is conjunctivitis. (Trivia: ‘itis’ means inflammation. Add it to another word and it means inflammation of that particular organ/part of the body.)
There are different types of conjunctivitis, but the one I am talking about here is bacterial conjunctivitis, which is not the common red eye/watery eyes that one develops mostly due to allergies. The symptoms of bacterial conjunctivitis are as follows:
- Your eye lids stick together in the morning because of a slightly yellowish discharge from the affected eye.
- Slight redness
- eye might be itchy
Now before I go ahead with this post, please note that I AM NOT A DOCTOR. It’s what I have learned from my experience. That’s all.
If, on a not-so-fine morning you wake up and find your eye lids slightly sticking together, first thing to do is wash your eyes with warm water. Make sure the slightly yellow discharge which might coat your eye lashes is cleaned away well. Dry your face with a towel.
Then, heat some drinking water in the kettle. Take a clean bowl and pour some of that water into it. Wait until the water comes to a temperature where you will still describe it as hot but it’s not scalding hot or lowered down to warm. Add salt into it generously. Taste that water with a spoon. The saltiness should be really evident but don’t overdo it. Then take a clean towel. Hold it with both hands and dip the middle part into the water. Wring out the water. Steam should come off the towel. Then gently place it over your affected eye. When the towel becomes cold, repeat the process atleast 5 more times. Use different parts of the towel each time, if it’s possible so that there are no chances of you contaminating the water each time you dip back the towel into it.
Also, place the towel and slightly dab onto the white part of your eye. The salt plus the heat helps destroy the bacteria. After some time, if your eye was itchy, you will notice that it doesn’t itch any more. Your eyes wouldn’t be red anymore and it will return back to normal. If you see the tiniest small pimple starting to arise on your eyelid, do the same technique.
Please note that, this technique is USEFUL only if you do it on the very same day that you find the symptoms of the infection. This technique has worked for me every single time that I did it (That is three times. The other two times I rushed to the ophthalmologist because that was the first two times and I really freaked out. I cherish my eyes and seeing it red and sad makes my heart break!).
You have to be extremely careful when doing this. After all, it’s your delicate eye which is in question. Make sure the water is not scalding hot and the salt level not too much.
Finally, I gotta say this. If you ever have such symptoms, and you have decided to wait around for 2 -3 days, let me tell you, that’s a BAD decision. Go and see an ophthalmologist ASAP. They will prescribe you with antibiotic eye drops. DO NOT wait around. Bacterial conjunctivitis might start in one eye and then spread to the other eye if not treated immediately.
Take care of your peepers