Coronavirus and Your Eyes
According to studies, some patients who have suffered and recovered from COVID-19 complain of discomfort in the eyes and various visual impairments. In most cases, this problem lasts for up to 2 weeks.
The general clinical symptoms of the eye damage associated with COVID include: redness of the eyes, photophobia, twitching, a feeling of dryness, foreign object sensation, itching, burning, blurred vision, and decreased visual acuity. Most often, the coronavirus infection affects both eyes, and the clinical picture in both eyes develops in the same way.
How Can the Coronavirus Affect Your Eyes?
The cause of conjunctivitis in the coronavirus is an infection that develops due to the penetration of viral particles through the mucous membranes of the eyes, which are the “gateway” for the virus.
Often, signs of viral conjunctivitis appear several days before an acute immune reaction of the body in the form of an increase in body temperature. After that, the patients feel general weakness, muscle pain, and impaired sense of smell.
Is There a Connection Between Red Eyes and Coronavirus?
As it has been said before, the mucous membrane of the eye suffers from the penetration of the coronavirus infection into it. A powerful inflammatory process develops, which can affect the cornea and retina of the eye. Also, scientists have proven that the coronavirus infection lives on the eyelids and eyelashes for up to 2 days. Therefore, there is an obvious connection between the red eye and coronavirus.
The risk groups include small children and the elderly who do not always responsibly observe the rules of personal hygiene. Carried away by an interesting game, children often touch their faces and rub their eyes. Also, there is a high probability of getting sick for those who, by the nature of their work, are forced to contact numerous people. With strong coughing and sneezing, infected saliva can spread up to several meters.
If You Aren’t Sure about Your Eye Symptoms …
One of the ways to prevent the penetration of the coronavirus infection into the eyes is to rinse the mucous membrane with isotonic sodium chloride solution. General recommendations for preventing the spread of COVID-19 say: do not touch your face and rub your eyes with dirty hands.
At the first signs of obvious eye inflammation, you should immediately consult an ophthalmologist.
Protect Your Eyes from the Coronavirus
Corrective glasses or sunglasses can protect the eyes from the virus. But, of course, it is not 100% guarantee: the virus can enter the eyes from the open sides of the glasses.
If you wear contact lenses, try switching to glasses for a while to avoid coronavirus red eyes. Contact lens wearers touch their eyes more often than others. The glasses will act as a barrier that reminds you not to touch your eyes. In addition, wearing glasses is additional protection.
- Disinfect your lenses. If you must wear contact lenses, be sure to clean and disinfect them as recommended by your ophthalmologist and according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
- Use napkins instead of hands. Sometimes, it is difficult to break the natural habit of rubbing your eyes. If you feel the urge to scratch them or just need to adjust your glasses, use a tissue instead of your fingers.
- Use drops to moist your eyes. Dry eyes can lead to more rubbing, so consider using moisturizing drops.
- Wash your hands. The easiest and most affordable way to escape COVID red eyes is to use simple soap solutions. It is necessary to process the lenses and temples of the glasses, and then thoroughly rinse the solution under running water. Then dry them with napkins or a towel (but never use a hand towel).
These simple measurements can protect your eyes from infectious conjunctivitis caused by the coronavirus.
When to See a Doctor
Remember, that COVID-19 is an extremely dangerous and contagious virus. Everyone has to pay great attention to the health and stay focused even on minor details. You have to contact a doctor in case of any breathing troubles, fatigue, fever, or any other troubling symptom of the disease. In case you cannot visit the doctor personally, you can ask for an online consultation. Even if you are not sure whether this is the coronavirus, the best option is to get advice from your doctor.