Trachoma is a common disease which affects the eyes. If untreated, this condition can lead to discomfort and severe trouble. Chlamydia trachomatis bacteria cause it. Trachoma is an infectious disease which can make someone blind at its advanced stage. It can affect any person irrespective of his or her age. Once infected, the eyelids are severely affected making the inner surface to become rough. It is a painful condition. In certain cases, this condition can make someone permanently blind especially if his or her eyelids turn inwards.
Some of the common names of this disease are blinding trachoma, granular conjunctivitis, and Egyptian ophthalmia. It is estimated that nearly 80 million people are troubled by trachoma in different parts of the world. One can contract this infection by contacting an affected person’s nose and eyes either directly or indirectly.
Types of trachoma
Medical experts have defined different types and stages of trachoma. The three types of trachoma infections include the following
This is an infection which affects adults and children living in unhygienic, crowded and unhealthy places. It is an infection which starts with one eye and then spreads to the other one. Once infected, the person’s eyes will become itchy and painful. Eyelids will also get swollen making them release a watery discharge.
This is an infection which is known for reoccurring after some time. This problem is more pronounces in the individuals who do not have access to clean water or living in poor hygiene.
Chronic trachoma leads to scratching of the cornea. It can also make your eyelids to turn inwards. If untreated this condition can lead to complete or partial blindness.
Causes of trachoma
Prevention of trachoma will become very easy once the causes are known. The following are the main cause which can lead to this infection.
- Closeness with cattle
- Poor personal hygiene
- Using clothing/towel of infected person
- Indirect/direct contact with an infected person
- Using unclean water
- Crowded living conditions
Avoiding the situations mentioned above can help you in staying away from this eye disease and avoid blinding. Untreated and repeated trachoma is very dangerous. It can lead to scratching of the cornea making someone blind.
Symptoms associated with trachoma
- Eye discharge
- Itching/irritation in eyes
- Increased sensitivity of the eyes towards light
- Nose, throat and ear complications
- Swollen eyelids
- Inward eyelashes
- Swollen lymph nodes
Understanding the symptoms described above can be challenging and confusing sometimes especially in the early stages of an infection. Your eyes should be checked by a qualified health professional.