During your appointment, your doctor will ask about your symptoms and your medical history and then perform an eye exam. In some cases, they will take a sample of any liquid draining from your eye to analyze in the lab.
It can be difficult to determine the exact cause of conjunctivitis, since the symptoms are so similar. However, there are some differences which your doctor can use to determine the optimal treatment option for you.
- Typically occurs at the same time as an ear infection or shortly after birth
- Eye discharge is thick, rather than watery
- Tends to occur seasonally when pollen counts are high
- Accompanied by intense itchiness in the eyes
Slight variations in symptoms can help your eye doctor identify the type of conjunctivitis you are suffering from.
If your doctor diagnoses you with conjunctivitis, you may want to ask:
- Is it contagious?
- If it is, how do I avoid spreading it?
- Do I need to stay home from school or work?