Illness: Conjunctivitis (Pinkeye)
When your baby awakens with her eyes crusted with discharge, she probably has pinkeye or conjunctivitis. With pinkeye, the clear membranes inside her eyes become inflamed, red, and irritated. Pinkeye is common and can be contagious.
Conjunctivitis (Pinkeye): Symptoms
- Red eyes that feel gritty and sore
- Yellow or green discharge from the eye
- Eyelids matted with discharge during and after sleep
- Accompanying condition such as a cold, sore throat, or upper-respiratory infection
Conjunctivitis (Pinkeye): Causes
- Allergies or irritants
- Blocked tear ducts
- Foreign object in eye
- Excessive heat and dampness
- Imbalance of liver and gallbladder energy
Conjunctivitis (Pinkeye): Prevention
Conjunctivitis that is caused by bacteria or a virus is highly contagious, so be aware of others who have it. If your child has pinkeye, continue to encourage her to wash her hands frequently and to avoid rubbing and touching her eyes. Also, be sure she has her own set of towels and linens at home, and change them after the infection is gone. Keep her home from child care, school, and public swimming pools until the infection clears.
Conjunctivitis (Pinkeye): Suggestions for Care
Conjunctivitis is not usually dangerous, but it needs to be treated. Take the following steps if your child has red eyes with discharge:
- Wash discharge from her eyes with warm or cool water and cotton balls three times per day, wiping from the inside toward the outside of the eye.
- Be sure your child uses separate washcloths and towels from everyone else in the house.
- Do not use over-the-counter eyedrops.
- Chamomile tea bags moistened with warm water as an eye compress
- Sesame oil on the eyelids before sleep can make the matted discharge easier to remove in the morning
Foods to Emphasize
Clear fluids and broths, green and yellow vegetables, and fruits (especially berries).
Foods to Avoid
Foods that create heat, such as red meat, garlic, refined sugar, dairy, eggs, spicy foods, and oily foods.
Essential Oils for Baby
Acupoints for Baby
- Stomach 36
- Spleen 6
- Triple Heater 5
- Gallbladder 20, 34
- Liver 3
Reiki for Baby
For two or more minutes, place your hands on the following parts of your child’s body: over the eyes, between the eyes and the nose, and between the eyes and the temples.
Massage for Baby
- If the cause is a blocked tear duct, gently massage from the inner corner of each eye toward the nose for one minute a few times per day.
- For other causes, gently massage the forehead on and above the eyebrows, stroking outward from the bridge of the nose toward the temples.
- Massage the cheekbones to help cool the eyes and to reduce inflammation.
- Massage the back of the neck at the base of the neck and move across the shoulders. Then gently stroke the back next to the spine down toward the lower back.
- Massage the stomach, kidney, and liver meridians.
- Gently pinch the bridge of the nose between the eyes and vibrate gently for two minutes to expel excess heat from the eyes.
Conjunctivitis (Pinkeye): Concerns
Pinkeye usually clears by itself. Speak with your health care provider if your baby has blurred vision or pain in her eye.
Note: The suggestions and ideas in this article are not intended to take the place of professional guidance or treatment; they are meant to complement the advice of your child’s health care provider, caretakers, and educators, while offering consolidated information to help you develop your intuition and make choices that fit with your own personal, religious, or spiritual philosophies. There is no guarantee as to the effects of the use of the recommendations and no liabilities can be taken.