How COVID-19 Impacts The Eyes?

Is it for the coronavirus to be transmitted through the eyes? It can be transmitted through droplets in the air, which can land on the eyes.

It’s not yet known whether COVID-19 has a direct effect on vision, but it is expected that the virus can cause conditions like conjunctivitis.

According to various studies, the common symptoms of this disease are high temperature, new continuous cough, and loss of taste or smell. Continue reading this full article and find out whether Coronavirus affects the eyes or vision.

Eye Symptoms of COVID-19

Conjunctivitis is also known as pink eye, is one of the possible signs of coronavirus-affected eyes.

This inflammation is most commonly caused by a viral infection and the major symptom of conjunctivitis is the pink or reddish color that occurs when the blood vessels in the conjunctiva become inflamed, by making them more visible.

Other common symptoms include:

  • Burning
  • Mild discharge
  • Eye crusting upon waking
  • Scratchy foreign body sensation

Does Coronavirus Affect the Eyes or Vision?

According to some research and findings, there has not yet been a significant study of the effects of COVID-19 in the eyes and vision of human patients.

But it is reported that the cats, rats, and mice that were infected with coronavirus developed optic neuritis, retinitis, anterior uveitis, and conjunctivitis.

How COVID-19 Impacts The Eyes

And the report published by the Journal of Medical Virology concluded that the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus might possibly be detected in the tears of patients who have novel coronavirus pneumonia.

But this study of 30 patients hospitalized for COVID-19 found only one patient diagnosed with conjunctivitis, so the researchers were still concerned about the possibility of eye infection and that was significant enough to warrant protection when treating patients.

How to Protect Your Eyes From COVID-19?

The best way to protect against COVID-19 is to protect your eyes during the outbreak.  Because the virus particles can be sprayed through the act of sneezing, coughing, or even when you’re talking into another person’s face. 

COVID-19 can be contracted by touching surfaces where it lands and then touching your own mouth, nose, or eyes, so it’s essential to avoid touching your face.

Because the droplets are unwittingly inhaled through the mouth or nose, but they can also affect the eyes, possibly causing conjunctivitis (among other eye conditions) and also transmitting the disease itself.

The virus can live for several hours or 7 days, so for this reason the government and public health officials are urging ophthalmologists not to see patients during the COVID-19 outbreak, except in cases of urgent or emergency care.

Also make sure to wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after being in a public place or after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing. And be sure about daily cleaning and disinfecting of frequently touched objects and surfaces can also help protect you.

Eye Care During the COVID-19

Follow these simple Eyecare tips during the COVID-19 outbreak

  • Choose eyeglasses

Instead of wearing contact lenses, choose eyeglasses. This will reduce the number of times you have to touch your eyes, and helps to reduce the risk of infection. Also, it provides a barrier against eye-touching, eyeglasses can help shield your eyes from respiratory droplets that transmit the coronavirus.

  • Wash your hands

Wash your hands for at least 20 seconds at a time, if don’t have access to soap and water, use a hand sanitizer that is at least 60 percent alcoholic.

  • Avoid touching or rubbing your eyes

It is very important especially when you have sick or when you have been near someone who has been coughing or sneezing. Because the studies show that the average person touches face 23 times per hour. So try to use a tissue instead of your fingers. 

  • Take additional precautions
  1. Clean your house and disinfect frequently used surfaces.
  2. Stay six feet away from other people
  3. Avoid large crowds.
  4. Sneeze into your elbow or a tissue.
  5. Steer clear of people who might be sick.

All of these above measures will reduce the possibility of transmitting COVID-19 and help to protect your eyes during this outbreak.

Is Eye Pain A Symptom Of Coronavirus?

Some of the scientific studies prove that sore, painful eyes are a symptom of coronavirus.

According to the report of Anglia Ruskin University, they found that of the 83 COVID-positive patients tested, 16% reported experiencing sore eyes, and 17% experience itchy eyes.

And the patients have reported that they experienced these ocular symptoms within 2 weeks of other more common COVID-19 symptoms, and most said that they lasted for less than 2 weeks. 

It’s important to protect your eyes during COVID-19 because the virus can spread through the eyes, just as it does through the mouth or nose.

And it is possible for coronavirus to cause a pink eye infection (conjunctivitis), but this is rare.

Practice safe hygiene and social distancing. If you have any questions/queries about your eyes or your vision, be sure to ask your ophthalmologist. 

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