~ An eye infection common to kids ~
Known as conjunctivitis, pinkeye can be caused by many of the same germs that cause colds, sore throats, ear infections and sinus infections. It can also be caused by allergies. So if you have asthma or hay fever, you are more likely to get pinkeye since the clear membrane that covers the white of the eye and inside of the eyelids is what becomes inflamed by the germ or allergy causing pollen or dust mite.
When you have pinkeye, your eyes can become very red and scary looking but there is usually nothing to worry about. It is important that you go to the doctor, however, even though it may get better by itself because some types of pinkeye need treatment to avoid causing problems. Pinkeye caused by bacteria will be treated with antibiotics or eye-drops; if caused by a virus, it will go away by itself. A wash- cloth dipped in cool or warm water placed on the eyelids can help your eyes feel less sore.
Pinkeye, if caused by a germ or virus, is very contagious and you can catch it just by touching a person who has pinkeye or by touching something they've touched. Using a swimming pool or sharing towels that are infected is another way you can get pinkeye as well as from someone who has the germ sneezing or coughing around you. It is important to stay at home away from others until your eyes have cleared up; otherwise you risk passing it on to everyone.
When you have pinkeye, you may feel like your eyes have sand in them and they may feel and look swollen or have some sticky liquid coming out of them. It is important that you don't touch your eye because you can easily pass the germs to your other eye.
To prevent catching pinkeye caused by infections, it is important to wash your hands often with warm water and soap and to make sure you don't share other people's eye-drops, eye make-up, towels, wash cloths or pillow cases. To prevent pinkeye caused by allergies, keep doors and windows closed on days when there is a lot of pollen and dust. Vacuum floors and furniture often so that allergy causing agents are removed.