Sexually transmitted diseases, or STDs, are commonly known to target the genital area. However, for some of these conditions, symptoms can travel all the way to the eyes, where they can cause additional complications. Learn about some of the ways that an STD can show up in your eye health.
How Spreading Works
Again, an STD is thought to be a problem that only targets the genital area. Yet, it is important to understand how these diseases work. Most of these conditions involve the spread of harmful bacteria from an infected person to another. In the same fashion that the bacteria spread from person to person, it will also spread once inside the body. It is important to note that an impact on your eyes is possible, but not every person will have this experience.
Keep in mind; certain sexually transmitted diseases do come with a greater risk of an eye health concern than others. Some of these conditions include chlamydia, herpes, and gonorrhea. Chlamydia can cause an eye infection known as trachoma, which can lead to blindness if untreated. A person diagnosed with herpes can develop eye disease and possibly experience vision concerns. Gonorrhea is highly transferrable and can cause an infection that if left untreated, can also lead to reduced vision or blindness.
If the impact of an STD has spread to your eyes, how treatment looks will often depend on the disease and where you are in the process. If you have already been diagnosed with the disease and your primary physician has prescribed a treatment, likely you will continue the treatment, as it should also clear up your eye concerns. However, if you have not been diagnosed, an eye health professional may prescribe an eye medicine and advise you to see your primary physician.
To protect your eyes from the effects of a sexually transmitted disease, you should engage in safe sexual practices. However, if a disease has already been contracted, ensuring you keep your hands clean is essential. Whenever an individual's hands come in contact with the bacteria-infected bodily fluids, if they touch their eyes, they can transfer the bacteria to them. Keep your hands clean and your hands away from your eyes.
It does not matter if the source of your eye concerns is related to an STD or not, you should speak with an eye health professional to address your needs. Contact a local eye care center to learn more about treatment options.