40 answers

How to cure excessive eye gunk in toddler?

The past 2 days my son's had excessive eye gunk. I'm not sure if I should be concerned. His eyes are not pink or red but I just wanted to double check with other moms. It only happens after he wakes about from his afternoon nap.

What can I do next?


It could be clogged tear duct or conjunctivitis - not serious but contagious. It could go away on it's own in about a week, but do consult your pediatrician.

So What Happened?™

Thank you everyone for your input. My husband took our son to the pediatrician today. He has a viral conjunctivitis - so not true pink eye (whew). He also is starting to get a cold - he was coughing last night. So our ped said to observe the eye gunk and treat his cold symptoms (tylenol, saline drops, humidifier as needed). She also prescribed eye drops in case his eyes do end up getting red and have more discharge. Thanks again - reading everyone's response urged me to make sure our son was seen right away!

More Answers

My girls all had ear problems. One of my daughters never ran a fever when she would get an ear infection but she would wake up every day with eye stuff. It never progressed like pink eye does but it was persistant. I hope this helps.

Allergies. My daughter has had the same problem. Her school even sent her home on two occasions. Her doctor prescribed patanol and it has helped alot. Good luck.

I would recommend washing his hands and face with antimicrobial soap BEFORE he naps or simply use wipes. Kids touch their face and rub their eyes and this gunk is just his cute little eyes rejecting germs. Try it. hope it helps..

Hi E.,
If it's not pink eye, could it be allergies?
I know sometimes the nap time is in a different spot, or a toy is there that may not be at night.

good luck and I hope it's not pink eye, yuck!!
D. H.

If the eye isn't red and swollen I would just wash off the gunk and keep an eye on it. Sometimes allergies will cause this.

This happened to my daughter when she was 18 months (now 20 months). Her eye was not red at all, but kept building up gunk. I took her to the doctor, he diagnosed it as pink eye, and gave me drops to put in her eyes a few times a day. Her eye was back to normal in 24 hours. The doctor also said that if any other family member started to show the same symptoms, they could use the same drops, which was convenient (but we didn't have any problems).
I'd take him to the doctor, just to be safe.

My 2 year old had the same 2 weeks back...no redness, no pinkness, no irriation, jut waking up "gunk". I took her to the Dr. and she had pink eye! As it is very contagious, my husband and then my 10 month old also got in within a week. Take your son to the Dr. for the prescription and it will clear up in 2-3 days. Good luck! S.

I would take him to the doctor because pink eye is going around. My mom, my sister, my son, and I all have it right now. My son didn't have the redness either, but he had the worst eye gunk I have ever seen. Hope this helps! Good luck!

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