Eye flu occurs when the conjunctiva, the thin membrane covering the white part of your eyes and the inner surface of your eyelids, becomes inflamed. This inflammation leads to red, itchy, and irritated eyes, often accompanied by watery or sticky discharge. If the cause of eye flu is viral or bacterial, it can spread rapidly through direct or indirect contact with infected eye secretions.
Care for Eye Flu:
- Frequent Handwashing: Regularly washing your hands with soap and water can prevent the spread of eye flu, especially if you have been in contact with someone infected. Avoid touching your eyes with unwashed hands.
- Use Clean Towels and Linens: Make sure to use clean towels, pillowcases, and linens to avoid reinfection. Washing these items in hot water can help eliminate any lingering germs.
- Practice Good Hygiene: If you are infected, it's essential to maintain good hygiene to avoid spreading the infection to others. Avoid sharing personal items like eye drops, makeup, towel etc.
- Apply Warm Compresses: A warm, damp washcloth placed over your closed eyes can help relieve discomfort and reduce swelling. Gently press the compress against your eyelids for a few minutes, several times a day.
- Lubricating Eye Drops: Over-the-counter lubricating eye drops or artificial tears can help alleviate dryness and irritation. Be sure to choose preservative-free drops to avoid further irritation.
- Avoid Allergens and Irritants: If you have known allergies or sensitivities, try to avoid triggers like pollen, pet dander, or smoke, as they can exacerbate eye flu symptoms.
- Boost Your Immune System: A strong immune system can help your body fight off infections more effectively. Maintain a healthy lifestyle with a balanced diet, regular exercise, and adequate sleep.
- Practice Social Distancing: If eye flu is prevalent in your community, consider practicing social distancing to minimize exposure to infected individuals.
- Follow Proper Hygiene Etiquette: Encourage those around you to cover their mouths and noses when coughing or sneezing to prevent the spread of respiratory droplets that could potentially transmit the virus.
Eye flu, although uncomfortable, can usually be managed with proper care and hygiene. By following these simple tips, you can alleviate symptoms and reduce the risk of spreading the infection to others. If symptoms persist or worsen, it's essential to consult an eye care professional for a proper diagnosis and treatment. Taking care of your eyes and practicing preventive measures will go a long way in ensuring healthy vision for a lifetime.
Dr Prashant Goyal