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Pink Eye During Pregnancy: Symptoms, Causes, and Treatments

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Pregnancy is usually one of the most significant phases in the life of a woman.

However, it may come with health challenges, among which pink eye during pregnancy is very common.

Pink eye, also known as Conjunctivitis, is a source of discomfort and fear in pregnant women.

Hence, learning about the symptoms and causes of pink eyes becomes important to detect it early.

Since it is natural to look for its treatment as it can make people nervous about its effect on pregnancy.

This article will discuss these symptoms, causes, and treatment of pink eyes during pregnancy.

Symptoms of Pink Eyes During Pregnancy

Pink eyes (Conjunctivitis) refers to an infection in the conjunctiva, which is the thin layer on the white part of the eye.

Although some people might wonder if the symptoms of pink eyes change when pregnant, the symptoms remain the same.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) lays down some common symptoms of pink eyes.

Individuals with pink eyes often experience redness, itching, and swelling of their conjunctiva.

If a woman has pink eyes during pregnancy, she might always feel like there is a foreign body in their eyes.

There is a constant thick discharge from the eyes, and one may always have a burning sensation in the eyes.

However, the symptoms might vary depending on the individual and the type of pink eyes they are experiencing.

Do you know there are three prominent types of pink eye, i.e. bacterial pink eye, allergic pink eye, and viral pink eye?

Want to know the difference between Viral Conjunctivitis and Bacterial Pink Eye? To learn, read Viral vs Bacterial Pink Eye: How to Know The Difference.

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  • Causes of Pink Eye During Pregnancy

    Allergic pink eyeSource: Wachira_Wacharapathom_from_Getty_Images
    Closeup of a woman suffering from pink eye

    Although there are several causes of pink eyes, pregnancy does not cause pink eyes.

    According to a study, pink eyes have three main causes: viruses, bacteria, and allergies.

    Viral Conjunctivitis is one of the most common types of pink eyes and is the cause of 75% of the population. 

    Since viral pink eyes are closely associated with common viral colds, it can also affect pregnant women.

    If a pregnant woman touches fecal matter or infected mucus and then touches their eye, it can cause bacterial infection.

    This bacterial infection can result in bacterial Conjunctivitis and is highly contagious.

    In some cases, allergens may also cause allergic pink eyes in a pregnant woman.

    If you want to know how long pink eye stays contagious, read How Long is Pink Eye Contagious: Contagious Period Explained.

    Although viral, bacterial, and allergic pink eyes are the most common types of Conjunctivitis in pregnant women, there are other causes. Improper use of contact lenses and exposure to chemicals might also result in pink eyes during pregnancy.

    Diagnosis and Treatment of Pink Eye During Pregnancy

    Glaucoma patient can also use this eye dropSource: Biserka_Stojanovic_from_Getty_Images
    Image of a senior woman using artificial tear drops

    Normally, the symptoms determine the diagnosis of pink eye and its treatment.

    However, it is important to consult an expert so that it does not cause any risk during pregnancy.

    Doctors usually suggest using artificial tear drops since there are no proven pink eye medications for treating viral Conjunctivitis.

    The artificial tear drops can help reduce itchiness, red eyes, and discomfort, which relieves the symptoms of viral pink eye and allergic pink eye.

    Since artificial tear drops are just for eye moisturization, it is not harmful to pregnant women.

    According to research, Antibiotic eye drops like Erythromycin, Tobramycin, and Gentamicin are safe to be used during pregnancy.

    Doctors usually prescribe Antibiotic eye drops to treat bacterial pink eye.

    However, it is always best to consult your doctor to receive the most suitable treatment for pink eye.

    Do you want to know about home remedies for pink eyes? Read 5 Must Try Pink Eye Home Remedies.

    Since a pregnant woman can experience Conjunctivitis, it is necessary to consult a medical expert before using any eye medications. It is important to remember that using medications harmful during pregnancy might have several serious consequences.


    Since pregnancy is a crucial time, it is natural to worry about pink eye during pregnancy.

    When you are pregnant, the symptoms of pink eye are similar to those of common symptoms of Conjunctivitis.

    These symptoms include redness, itching, swelling, irritation, and eye discharge.

    If you are a person who is pregnant with pink eyes, it can be due to causes like viruses, bacteria, and allergies.

    The treatment of pink eyes is decided based on the cause, and it might also vary if pregnancy and pink eyes are present in an individual.

    Doctors might suggest artificial tear drops to relieve the symptoms of allergic and viral Conjunctivitis in a pregnant woman.

    However, only certain Antibiotic eye drops like Erythromycin, Tobramycin, and Gentamicin are safe for treating bacterial pink eye during pregnancy.

    You should always consult your doctor for a proper diagnosis and suitable treatment.

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    Frequently Asked Questions

    Is pink eye common during pregnancy?

    No, pink eyes are not common during pregnancy. There is no particular factor about pregnancy that might lead to Conjunctivitis. However, an individual might get affected due to viruses, bacteria, and allergies.

    Is pink eye harmful during pregnancy?

    No, pink eye is not harmful during pregnancy. Although it can cause more discomfort if a person is pregnant and has pink eye at the same time, getting proper treatment can usually heal it in 1 to 2 weeks.

    How do you treat pink eye when pregnant?

    The treatment of pink eye will depend on its cause. If a person has allergic or viral Conjunctivitis, doctors usually recommend artificial tear drops to relieve symptoms like irritation and dryness.
    In the case of bacterial pink eye, they prescribe Erythromycin, Tobramycin, and Gentamicin since they are safe during pregnancy.

    Is pink eye a sign of pregnancy?

    No, pink eye is not a sign of pregnancy. Pregnancy has no factors that can result in a person’s pink eyes. A pregnant woman may get a pink eye due to viruses, bacteria, and allergies.

    Are pink eye drops safe for pregnancy?

    Yes, there are some pink eye drops that are safe for pregnancy. Antibiotic eye drops like Erythromycin, Tobramycin, and Gentamicin are safe to treat bacterial Conjunctivitis during pregnancy. People can also use artificial tear drops to treat allergic and viral pink eyes.

    Cheap Medicine Shop only refers to credible, authoritative sources for our content. If you’re curious about how we ensure the integrity of our content, we encourage you to read our Content Information Policy.

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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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