So today I’ll be talking about air pollution and conjunctivitis. The conjunctiva is actually very protective layer over the eye. It helps lubricate the eye by producing mucus and tears and also contribute to the immune balance of the ice surface. We are faced with high AQI levels and air pollution symptoms of a nonspecific conjunctivitis emerge. These include a foreign body sensation, itching, light sensitivity, burning and redness, especially because of rubbing the eye to relieve the symptoms. This rubbing can induce a secondary bacterial conjunctivitis also because we can transmit infections through this red regular rubbing. Common air contaminants that can cause conjunctivitis include sulphur dioxide, nitrogen dioxide, particulate matter and high ozone levels. To add to this, the chronic dry eye milieu which is produced by high air pollution levels also contributes to the nonspecific conjunctivitis and allergy can also be induced by any of these particles. So patients who already have dryness and already are predisposed to allergies, allergies can have an escalation of this into.
By Dr. Deepali Garg Mathur, Principal Consultant, Eye Care / Ophthalmology, Max Multi Speciality Centre, Panchsheel Park