Is your baby suffering from red or pink swollen eyes? Is he or she suffering from watery discharge from the eyes? Watch out, you may be having a Conjunctivitis baby. Read on to know all about Conjunctivitis in Babies and find out how to treat the disease in your kid.
Conjunctivitis in Babies
Conjunctivitis, as you are probably aware, is an inflammation of the Conjunctiva, a thin transparent tissue layer lining the white part of the eyes. It is one of most common eye infections around the world. Conjunctivitis in babies is usually a result of a bacterial, viral or allergenic infection.
Conjunctivitis in Babies Symptoms
Some of the major symptoms of Conjunctivitis in babies are
The whites of one or both eyes of babies appear red to view. In newborns, the lower rim of either eyelid may turn red due to this infection.
The condition typically gives rise to swelling of the whites of one of the eyes or both of them. Inflammation is one of the earliest signs of Conjunctivitis in babies. There is mild swelling in the initial stages that may turn severe in later phases.
Conjunctivitis babies typically have a thin, watery secretion from their eyes during the entire period that the disease lasts. In later stages, the discharge may contain yellow or white pus and mucus that make clear vision extremely difficult. Mucus discharge can give rise to crusts on the eyelashes and make the eyelids stick together, especially after sleep. Discharge is common in case of Conjunctivitis caused by allergy.
There is a mild pain in the eyes in the early stages of Conjunctivitis. This becomes severe with passing hours and is accompanied with soreness, itching and a burning sensation. There is also a gritty sensation that makes sufferers feel like they have sand particles in the eyes.
What Causes Conjunctivitis In Babies?
The main causes of Conjunctivitis in babies are
Conjunctivitis in newborns is often a result of bacterial infection. Bacterial Conjunctivitis in babies can occur due to infection by bacteria of type Moraxella or Chlamydia Trachomatis. A mother who is suffering from a sexually transmitted disease (STD) can pass on the bacteria to her unborn infant giving rise to “Pink Eye” in future.
Viral Conjunctivitis in infants and toddlers is generally a result of infection by Enterovirus 70 and Coxsackievirus A24. It is an extremely infectious condition and causes redness and inflammation of the eyes as well as watery ocular discharge.
Conjunctivitis in kids may also appear due to irritation of eyes by allergens like pollen, dust or smoke. Other than redness, inflammation and discharge from eyes, allergens may also cause wheezing and runny nose in babies. However, allergenic symptoms are rare in babies aged less than 1 year.
How to Treat Conjunctivitis in Children?
In most cases, there is no need for treatment of Conjunctivitis for babies. Viral Conjunctivitis in babies is usually benign and self-limiting and need no cure except in cases when it becomes too discomforting. In many babies, infection clears up in 5-7 days without medical treatment.
If a physician suspects a bacterial infection, an anti-bacterial antibiotic ointment or eye drop may be prescribed for treatment for Conjunctivitis in babies. However, there have been cases where a Conjunctivitis newborn has been seen to react to anti-bacterial eye drops. To avoid this, these drops must be administered in low doses at first. Suitable drops can cure infection within 24-36 hours.
A children suffering from allergenic itchiness and irritation may be treated with a small course of antihistamine tablets and steroid eye drops. Doctors may prescribe anti-allergy drugs like Patanol and Alocril for faster recovery. Anti-bacterial clean-ups of eyes and eye drops are usually sufficient for cure of Chemical Conjunctivitis in babies and children.
How To Treat Conjunctivitis In Babies At Home?
There are several home remedies for Conjunctivitis in babies. In many cases, the disease can be effectively cured with natural remedies and without the aid of medications. For treatment of Conjunctivitis in babies home remedy involves
Cool Water Wash
Gently wash the eyes of your baby with cooled boiled water. This is very effective in reducing pain and inflammation in the eyes as well as clearing discharge temporarily.
Warm Water Wash
Soak a piece of cotton wool in boiled water and sweep gently from the inner to the outer edge of the eye to remove any discharge and debris.
Wash Your Hands
Wash you hands with soap after you touch the affected eye of your kid. This will help prevent infection to the baby’s other eye or even your own eye. In case of Conjunctivitis in babies one eye is infected first. The infection usually spreads to the other eye because of unclean hands.
Conjunctivitis In Babies Natural Remedies
Some of the most trusted natural remedies for Conjunctivitis in babies are
Eyebright has strong strengthening and cleansing properties and is recommended by many herbalists as the best cure for Conjunctivitis eye infection. Pour Eyebright into a cup of water and boil the solution. Cool it down and strain. Apply this gently over the eyes with a fresh cotton wool.
Breast milk is known to be the most perfect food in the world. It is the source of many antibodies that combat and cure infection. Pouring a few drops of breast milk over the eyes of little Conjunctivitis children is known to cure their infection fast. In babies with Conjunctivitis breast milk is regarded to be a good cure.
Washing the eyes of an affected baby with a sea-salt solution can make them free from crusts and watery discharge. Sea-salt works as a mild, natural antiseptic and cleansing agent.
Is Conjunctivitis In Babies Contagious?
People attending to Conjunctivitis babies should remain careful until the symptoms go away. Conjunctivitis is contagious and may even affect adults without preventive measures. It is better to consult an expert physician to check whether or not your baby is having a contagious Conjunctivitis.
Conjunctivitis can be very discomforting for babies. The good news is, the condition does not last too long and goes away within a day or two after proper treatment.