Skip to content

    Eye Health Center

    Font Size
    A
    A
    A

    Understanding Pink Eye -- Prevention

    How Can I Prevent Pink Eye?

    Bacterial and viral pink eye are contagious. To prevent contracting pink eye or spreading it to other people, follow these preventive measures.

    • Wash hands thoroughly and often, especially if you touch your eye or the area around it.
    • Keep hands away from the infected eye. Infection can also enter the body through the nose and mouth.
    • Do not share washcloths, towels, pillowcases, or handkerchiefs with others, including family members.
    • Change the above items after each use and wash them thoroughly.
    • Do not use other people's eye drops or cosmetics, particularly eyeliner pencils and mascara.

    If your child gets pink eye, keep him or her out of school for a few days until there is no eye discharge and the redness is completely gone. Once one student comes down with pink eye, it is not uncommon for it to spread to an entire class.

    Recommended Related to Eye Health

    Eye Floaters (Benign)

    Eye floaters are small moving spots that appear in your field of vision. They may be especially noticeable when you look at something bright, such as white paper or a blue sky. Eye floaters can be annoying, but they generally don't interfere with your sight. Occasionally a particularly large eye floater may cast a subtle shadow over your vision. But this tends to occur only in certain types of light. Most of the time people learn to live with eye floaters and ignore them. And they often...

    Read the Eye Floaters (Benign) article > >

    Allergic pink eye can be prevented by avoiding those things that trigger the condition. New treatments for allergy sufferers (pills and eye drops) can help prevent symptoms before they occur. Some patients benefit from skin testing that identifies specific sensitivities that can be blocked with regular injections (immune therapy).

    Some forms of pink eye are caused by irritation from chemicals used to clean contact lenses. Temporary or permanent discontinuation of contact lens use can help relieve giant papillary conjunctivitis.

    WebMD Medical Reference

    Reviewed by Alan Kozarsky, MD on March 07, 2015

    Today on WebMD

    Woman holding tissue to reddened eye
    Learn about causes, symptoms, and treatments.
    eye
    Simple annoyance or the sign of a problem?
     
    red eyes
    Symptoms, triggers, and treatments.
    blue eye with contact lens
    Tips for wearing and caring.
     
    Understanding Stye
    Article
    human eye
    Article
     
    eye
    Video
    eye exam timing
    Video
     
    vision test
    Tool
    is vision correction surgery for you
    Article
     
    high tech contacts
    Article
    eye drop
    Article