Covid-19 and conjunctivitis: How to take care of pink eyes
Academic studies at the outset of the coronavirus pandemic identified conjunctivitis as a secondary symptoms in about 10 to 15 per cent of Covid-19 cases.Updated: Jul 28, 2020 10:42 IST
The coronavirus pandemic has gripped the entire world, affecting millions. It has led to over six lakh deaths too and pharmacists across the world are racing to find a vaccine to cure Covid-19, the disease it causes.
Covid-19 affectes different people in different ways Among the common symptoms that a patient of Covid-19 exhibits are fever, dry cough and tiredness. Some others may experience aches and pains, sore throat, headache and loss of taste or smell.
But some experts have said that the coronavirus disease can spread through the eyes too, just as it does through the mouth or nose. According to American Academy of Ophthalmogists, the Sars-CoV-2 virus can cause pink eye infection (conjunctivitis).
A study in this regard was done in June and published in the Canadian Journal of Ophthalmology. Academic studies at the outset of the pandemic identified conjunctivitis as a secondary symptoms in about 10 to 15 per cent of Covid-19 cases.
How to protect your eyes during Covid-19
• Guarding your eyes - as well as your hands, nose, and mouth. According to Rajesh Sinha, Professor of Ophthalmology at AIIMS, New Delhi, when a person touches an affected surface and then touches the eyes or the face, the virus can enter the body. With spectacles, one can prevent virus droplets from coming in contact with the eyes.
• Those wearing contact lenses should consider switching to glasses for a while. “They should also be careful before rubbing their eyes,” said Ikeda Lal, Ophthalmologist at Delhi Eye Centre and Sir Ganga Ram Hospital in New Delhi. This can allow the virus to get into the eyes.
• Sunglasses or prescription glasses can be worn while going out to protect the eyes.
• Use eye drops or lubricating agents. Since a lot of people are working from home, the screen time has increased considerably. And then there are webinars, web series, movies or video chats. All this can lead to dryness in eyer and increase the blinking rate. The eyer drops and lubricating agents will help in this, said experts.
• Social distancing and hygiene is of course important. The ophthalmologists say that there is no substitute to washing your hands. And this should be done frequently.