Before we talk about signs of pinkeye in kids, lets refresh our knowledge about the disease. The eye infection conjunctivitis (kun-junk-tih-VY-tus) – typically called pinkeye – prevails in young kids. It’s generally contagious, and breakouts can sweep through preschools and play areas. However even teens and adults can get pinkeye.
Pinkeye is an inflammation of the conjunctiva, the white part of the eye and the inner eyelids. It’s a small infection and although it may look bad, generally isn’t major.
Still, if your child reveals signs of pinkeye, it’s crucial to see a doctor. Some type of pinkeye disappear by themselves, however others require treatment.
What Causes Pinkeye in Toddlers?
Transmittable pinkeye (the kind that can infect others) can be brought on by much of the bacteria and infections responsible for colds and other infections – consisting of ear infections, sinus infections, and sore throats. Often it’s caused by the very same types of bacteria that cause chlamydia and gonorrhea, two sexually transmitted illness (STDs).
Some type of pinkeye are noninfectious, such as:
- allergic conjunctivitis, which occurs more often in kids with other allergic conditions, like hay fever. Triggers consist of grass, ragweed pollen, animal dander, and allergen.
- irritant conjunctivitis, brought on by anything that irritates the eyes, such as air contamination or chlorine in swimming pools
Newborns are at risk for pinkeye and can establish serious health complications if it’s not treated. If a pregnant lady has an STD, during delivery the bacteria or infection can pass from the birth canal into the baby’s eyes, causing pinkeye. To prevent this, medical professionals offer antibiotic ointment or eye drops to all babies right away after birth. Occasionally, this treatment causes a moderate chemical conjunctivitis, which usually clears up by itself. Physicians also can evaluate pregnant women for STDs and treat them during pregnancy to prevent spreading out the infection to the baby.
What Are the Signs and Symptoms of Pinkeye in Toddlers?
Besides the obvious red or pink color that gives pinkeye its name, eye pain is a typical symptom. Kids might say that it feels like there’s sand in the eye. Often, there’s some discharge from the eye, and pain and swelling of the conjunctiva. Some kids have swollen eyelids or sensitivity to intense light. Pinkeye can affect one or both eyes.
In cases of allergic conjunctivitis, itchiness and watery eyes prevail symptoms.
Is Pinkeye Contagious?
Pinkeye is contagious if it’s brought on by bacteria or a virus:
- Pinkeye that’s caused by bacteria can spread to others as quickly as symptoms appear and for as long as there’s discharge from the eye – or till 24 hours after antibiotics are started.
- Pinkeye that’s caused by an infection is typically contagious before symptoms appear and can stay so as long as the symptoms last.
Allergic conjunctivitis and irritant conjunctivitis are not contagious.
A child can get pinkeye by touching an infected person or something an infected person has touched, such as a used tissue. In the summer, pinkeye can spread out when kids swim in infected water or share contaminated towels. It also can spread out through coughing and sneezing.
Also, someone who has pinkeye in one eye can spread it to the other eye by rubbing or touching the infected eye, then touching the other eye.