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Everything You Need to Know About Pink Eye Discharge

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People might usually observe certain symptoms when they have pink eyes, medically known as Conjunctivitis.

Among the other symptoms, pink eye discharge is quite common among individuals.

It is important to know the types of discharge during the pink eye to differentiate between the pink eye causes.

The color of the different kinds of discharge might be different, ranging from white, yellow to even green.

This article will discuss the different types of pink eye discharge and tips for managing it.

Understanding Pink Eye Discharge

A person experiences discharge from their eyes when affected by one of the most common eye infections, Conjunctivitis.

Conjunctivitis or pink eyes refers to the condition where the thin membrane on the white part of one’s eyes gets affected due to viruses, bacteria, and allergies.

In these cases, individuals might notice a fluid accumulating in the corner of the eyes.

This fluid may flow into the eyelash or eyelids and cause huge discomfort.

This fluid is known as pink eye discharge and usually varies in color, consistency, and quantity. 

Pink eye with eye discharge is usually noticed during the morning after sleep since the discharge accumulates.

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  • Differentiating Different Kinds of Pink Eye Discharge

    The color and texture of different pink eye discharges may differ based on the type of pink eye causing it.

    The discharge color can be yellow, green, or white in an individual.

    On the other hand, the texture or consistency can be watery, mucous-like, or thick and pus-like.

    While some people might experience the discharge in smaller amounts, others may get more of it.

    This section will discuss the different types of pink eye discharge since it is important in diagnosing Conjunctivitis.

    Viral Conjunctivitis Discharge

    According to a study, apart from redness and itching, a person with viral pink eye experiences watery discharge.

    The discharge is often clear in nature but is sticky in texture or consistency.

    Since this condition is highly contagious, one should take preventive measures to clean the discharge.

    Doctors usually suggest medicines to relieve the symptoms since Antibiotics are ineffective for viral infections.

    The artificial tear drops help soothe pink eye symptoms like redness, swelling, itching, and burning.

    Bacterial Conjunctivitis Discharge

    Bacterial pink eyeSource: Siganture_image
    Closeup of a woman suffering from Bacterial pink eye

    Research states that bacterial pink eye is usually accompanied by purulent or mucopurulent discharge.

    The discharge is typically thick, and in this case, one experiences pink eye green discharge.

    Individuals might notice their eyelashes sticking together during the morning due to the accumulation of the discharge during sleep.

    The color of the discharge may also be yellow in some individuals, and it is highly contagious.

    Doctors often suggest Antibiotics to treat the bacterial infection causing the pink eye to reduce the discharge.

    Purulent refers to a thick yellow or greenish discharge, usually present if a person has an infection. It can be pus from a wound or during bacterial Conjunctivitis.
    Mucopurulent refers to the discharge that consists of a combination of mucus and pus and is present during infections affecting the respiratory tract or during bacterial pink eye.

    Allergic Conjunctivitis Discharge

    Allergic pink eyeSource: Wachira_Wacharapathom_from_Getty_Images
    Allergic pink eye

    A study states that a person experiencing simple allergic Conjunctivitis often faces clear and watery discharge.

    In the case of allergic pink eyes, the discharge does not accumulate much during the mornings.

    Since it is often triggered due to pollens or dust particles, removing the allergen from the surroundings and eyes may be effective.

    Removing the allergen can reduce the discomfort and discharge within a few hours.

    Tips for Managing Pink Eye Discharge

    The causes of pink eyes always determine its treatment, so it is important to know them to manage pink eye discharge.

    According to a study, since the viral pink eye is highly contagious, one should maintain hygiene to control its spread.

    Controlling its spread can help reduce the symptoms and help in managing viral pink eye discharge.

    Warm compresses can also help clean the crust from the pink eye discharge.

    Rinsing the eyes with water can help clean the discharge from the eyes during any kind of Conjunctivitis.

    To receive the best results, it is important to consult your doctor immediately for proper treatment of pink eyes.

    Are you wondering how you can treat pink eyes with home remedies? Read 5 Must Try Pink Eye Home Remedies.

    If you are constantly experiencing sticky eyelashes due to discharge during your sleep, it can be a symptom of pink eye. It is important to treat the condition since it can cause serious discomfort.


    Pink eye discharge is one of the common symptoms of different causes of pink eyes.

    An individual with viral pink eye may experience a watery and sticky discharge.

    People with bacterial pink eye may have a thick green or yellow discharge consisting of mucus.

    On the other hand, the allergic pink eye discharge is usually clearer and watery in nature.

    To manage the discharge, people can use warm compresses or water to rinse the discharge.

    However, it is always best to consult a doctor and treat the pink eye symptoms to manage the discharge effectively.

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    Frequently Asked Questions

    What does pink eye discharge look like?

    The pink eye discharge color and consistency may differ based on its causes. While the viral pink eye discharge is watery and thick, bacterial Conjunctivitis discharge may look yellowish or green with mucus. Allergic pink eye discharge is usually clear and watery in nature.

    Does pink eye always have discharge?

    No, the pink eye does not always have discharge. Some of the types of bacterial Conjunctivitis do not have any discharge. However, apart from redness, itching, swelling, and burning, eye discharge is one of the most common symptoms of pink eyes.

    Can you have pink eye without discharge?

    Yes, you can have pink eyes without discharge. Although discharge during pink eyes is a common symptom, in some cases, individuals might experience little to no discharge apart from swelling or itching.

    How do you get rid of mucus from pink eye?

    In order to get rid of the mucus from pink eye, a person can use cotton balls or clean tissue to wipe it off gently. In some cases, using warm compresses to clean the discharge or using water to rinse it off might also be effective.

    How long does discharge last with pink eye?

    The pink eye discharge usually lasts about 1-2 weeks. In most cases, the discharge starts clearing up after a few days of the infection. 

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    Photo of author Janet Fudge
    Janet Fudge is a highly skilled and experienced pharmacologist who serves as a contributing writer for With a strong academic background from a premier US University and a passion for helping others, Janet has become a trusted voice in the pharmaceutical world. After completing her Doctor of Pharmacy degree, Janet embarked on a successful career in the pharmaceutical industry, working with various clients, including hospitals, retail pharmacies, and drug manufacturers. Her in-depth knowledge of pharmacology and dedication to patient-centered care has led her to excel in her field. As a writer for, Janet uses her wealth of expertise to provide readers with accurate, reliable, and up-to-date information on various topics related to medicine and healthcare. Her engaging writing style and ability to break down complex topics into easily digestible content make her a valuable resource for healthcare professionals and the general public.
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