'Sore eyes' is the common name for conjunctivitis - the inflammation of the thin layer of issue covering the front of the eye (the conjunctiva).
Symptoms include redness, itchiness, slight pain, watering of the eyes, a feeling like you have sand in your eye, and a sticky coating on the eyelashes (usually when you first wake up).
It can be caused by bacteria, viruses, allergic reactions to smoke, pollen, dust or chemicals in makeup or contact lenses.
HOW TO TREAT AT HOME
- Wash your hands with soap and water frequently
- Do not share towels or pillows
- Remove any discharge from your eyes with clean tissue, or with cotton wool soaked in water
- Do not wear eye makeup or contact lenses until your symptoms clear up
- Use over-the-counter lubricant eye drops in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions
- Hold a warm, damp cloth over your eyelids to relieve discomfort
SEE YOUR GP IF:
- there is pain and discharge from the eyes
- you are wearing contact lenses
- the soreness does not go away after 3 days
GO TO THE A&E IF:
- your sore eyes were caused by chemicals
- your vision is affected, e.g. blurriness or sensitivity to light