M.H. asks from Minneapolis, MN on October 27, 2006
Chronic Pink Eye
In the past month my almost one year old has had pink eye 3 times. He goes to a daycare center full time. Typically when he gets pink eye it means a cold is not far behind adn that is followed by an ear infection. I know that pink eye is easily contagious but does anyone know if there is another way of catching it besides from someone that already has it? I know that for situations like chronic ear infections they'll put tubes in a child's ears but is there anything that can be done about chronic pink eye? I hate seeing my little guy so uncomfortable with goopy eyes.
T.S. answers from Minneapolis on October 28, 2006
My son had the same problem with Pink eye. It seemed once we got rid of it, it came right back. Children can get it from themselves as well as other children. If a child has a runny nose or sneezes and then uses their hand to wipe the nose and at a young age this is common. They will wipe the nose with their and and go from the nose to the eyes and pink is caused that way too. If you know that pink eye is starting there is a eye drop you can buy over the counter no. I'm sorry I don't remember the exact name of it, but it has a pink cap, is a very small bottle and usually on the top shelf. It is by other childrens cold items. the box does say pink eye on it ( I believe). I always find it at wal-mart.
Good luck I hope this helps.
J.P. answers from Minneapolis on October 28, 2006
My son got pink eye when he had a runny nose. While he was sleeping one night, he got it all over his face and in his eyes, and woke up with pink eye. I have a friend who is a lifeguard at the Y, and she told me that the most common cause of pink eye is from swimming pools. If anyone has a runny nose in the pool, it can get in the water and into other people's eyes. They use chemicals to try to stop that, but it doesn't get rid of all of it, and lifeguards usually get pink eye a lot. I stayed at a hotel in chicago last may and didn't spend much time in the pool because it didn't seem that clean (surprising for a nice 4 star hotel), and me and my son both got pink eye after that, so I am assuming it was from the pool.
S. answers from Minneapolis on October 28, 2006
My doctor told me that one false believe is that people think once you've been on the antibiotic drop for 24hrs your not contagious anymore. She said that people are contagious for as long as the eye is red or shows any other sign of pink eye.
Most daycare accept children back after 24hrs. after they've been on the drops so that could be a reason that it gets past back and forth.
S.B. answers from Janesville-Beloit on October 29, 2006
I am a day care provider as well as a mother. It sounds to me that the day care needs to be washing and sanitizing their toys a little better. I know that is what I do with any contagious infections that come into my daycare environment.
K.H. answers from Minneapolis on October 28, 2006
2 times I went to the doctor thinking my babies had pink eye and he told me it wasn;t pink eye but a clogged tear duct and to massage the affected eye with a clean finger in a rolling fashion (roll your finger from the inside of the eye where the tear duct is outward) and apply warm wash clothes. If you are still breast feeding squirting in a bit of b.milk will also help with infections. Ask your doctor if in fact it might be a clogged tear duct instead of pink eye. If so I know there is a simple outpatient procedure they can do to unblock chronically clogged tear ducts, if in fact that is the case. Its worth looking into at least...
L.P. answers from Madison on October 29, 2006
If you research pink eye, you will find that there are two types: viral and bacterial. The bacterial type can be combatted with anti-bacterial medication. The viral type cannot. There are also different ways you can get pink eye. If you have allergies (allergens in the air that irratate the eyes),...fuzzies, including shampoo, lake water, pool water, etc..any irratation. Once you have it, then it can also spread if the irratation gets infected. This is called pink eye.
Once I took my son who was 1 yr old at the time, swimming in a lake and he got lake water in his eyes. I knew he wasnt exposed to pink eye, so thinking it was something else I took him to the Dr. My son had pink eye in both his eyes and it was gone after we gave him the drops for a few days.
Hope this helps.
J.F. answers from Rochester on October 28, 2006
Are any other children there having repeat problems with this? Maybe the staff needs to start washing their hands better.
Has your optometrist told you specifically that it's pink eye? It could be conjuctivitis. Conjunctivitis is a build up of mucus in the tear ducts due to a cold or runny nose. You can have it even if you have no other symptoms of a cold.
The most common antibiotic for conjunctivitis is Erythromyacin (sp?) which is an ointment applied to the eyelids along the lash line. Using a warm compress to wipe away visible mucus helps alot, too. Like pink eye, conjunctivitis leaves the eyes pink and swollen-looking, and of course, sore. Little ones will often rub their eyes alot, and that will make the eye even more swollen.
If it's definitely pink eye, I'd talk to the daycare center about how they disinfect things. Three times in one month means that something isn't right. I understand that we're at the time of year when colds and the flu are easily spread, but they need to be keeping up to standard on cleaning/disinfecting to keep everyone safe and healthy.
L.K. answers from La Crosse on October 29, 2006
Jessica is correct about conjunctivitis. Erythromycin is usually taken in pill form, but they make an ointment for the eye infections also. Although, conjunctivitis isn't usually seen in children....it is more so for the elderly. If you do see it in children, it is usually from dirty hands...lack of washing hands. If your child is a chronic nose and eye rubber or one of those kids that has to have their hands in their pants...this could be the problem. Both places harbor BILLIONS of bacteria just waiting to be introduced to a mucosa like the eye. If these are not habits that your child has, then talk the day care provider and see if there are other kids that have these habits and tell her that she needs to have them washing their hands freqently during the day. She may want to invest in antibacterial hand rubs. They are quick and effective. Someone is not practicing good hand washing skills...find out who and you will find your source.
A.S. answers from Milwaukee on October 29, 2006
tell the daycare to wash and sanatize their toys.if the toys are dirty with the pink eye germ hell keep getting it!