Do not ignore redness, swelling of eyes during monsoon: Health experts

New Delhi, June 20 (IANS) As pre-monsoon showers hits the national capital, health experts have urged people to not to ignore symptoms like redness, swelling or burning sensation in the eyes and consult an ophthalmologist immediately as it could be conjunctivitis, corneal ulcer or stye that are quite common during the rainy season.

According to opthalmologists, people enjoy the monsoon season but they are not aware that even direct contact between the eyes and rain water can cause many types of infections.

Common problems encountered during the season includes conjunctivitis, stye, meibomitis, dry eyes and corneal ulcers.

“Corneal ulcers are dreaded, they may even cause blindness. It is a severe form of eye infection due to viral, bacterial or fungal infection. It occurs as a red, painful eye, with mild to severe discharge and reduced vision. It should not be ignored,” said Mahipal Sachdev, Chairman of Centre for Sight (CFS).

He said that conjunctivitis is the most common eye infection during these wet months, which increases to 35-40 per cent during the monsoon and more among the children.

Explaining the ailment, Sachdev said: “The surface of the white of the eye and the back surface of eyelids is covered by a thin protective membrane called conjunctiva. Inflammation and redness of this membrane is called conjunctivitis. It can be a result of allergy to dust, pollen, medicines, cosmetics or contact lenses.”

About eye-related hygiene during the monsoon, he said: “One should avoid sharing towels and similar personal items with others, because infections mostly spread through hands, clothes and other commonly-touched items.”

Experts also said that dryness of eyes during the monsoon season triggers most of the problems including stye.

Ritika Sachdev, an Delhi-based opthalmic surgeon, said: “Dryness of eye is again a common problem, aggravated due to increased use of computers, smartphones, air-conditioned indoors.

“Person experiences discomfort, burning sensation, grittiness and even blurred vision due to dry eye,” she said.

Sachdev said that also common are styes or an infection in the eyelid which looks like a pimple and occurs when the oil gland in the eyelid gets infected.

“This painful little bump is a limiting condition which ruptures on its own. Avoid popping a stye. The only way to avoid it is by the usage of warm water, which reduces the inflammation and pain of the stye.

“Eye stye occurs in the form of a lump on the eyelid. Its symptoms are excruciating pain, pus discharge, redness over eyelids. Its basic treatment is warm and cold compresses at home, eye drops and other medication. But if the size of the lump increases, the patient needs to visit an ophthalmologist,” she said.



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