Pink eye is a popular name for the medical condition called conjunctivitis, whichis the inflammation or infection of the conjunctiva – the membrane that outlinesthe eyelids and the part of the eyeballs. When the inflammation occurs, theblood vessels become more visible and because of that, the eye becomes red orpink. Even though conjunctivitis is a quite irritating condition, it does not impairthe vision. However, this infection is contagious and should be treated promptly. Pink eye in babies is a quite normalcondition usually induced by some viral or bacterial infection, but is can alsobe caused by many other factors.
Symptoms and causes of baby pink eye
What symptoms will appear depends onthe underlying culprit for the occurrence of the pink eye in a baby. It is observed that, in the majorityof cases, the babies contract the bacterial conjunctivitis due to the bacteria H. influenzae and S. pneumonia. The babies who come to suffer fromthis type of conjunctivitis usually experience yellow green discharge fromtheir eyes, which is accompanied by itching and a burning sensation. The botheyes are red and the baby cannot easily adjust to bright lights. On the other side, when the babysuffers from viral conjunctivitis, the white discharge appears from the eyesalong with a burning sensation, redness and itching. If caused by the adenovirus, viral conjunctivitis ininfants may appear together with runny nose andcough, as well as with enlarged lymph nodes and sore throat.
Many babies are allergic to dust,pollen or smoke and as a result of the allergy, pink eye occurs. The most commonsymptoms of allergic conjunctivitis in the babies are redness, tearing orwatery eyes and swollen whites of the eyes. Pink eye in the babies may also be triggered by an injury or by a foreign bodythat enters the eye. When this happens, the baby usually feels pain in the eye andredness with tearing appears.
Since conjunctivitis is an infectiouscondition, it can be simply spread from an infected person to the others. Thus,the baby can contract this infection when touching the infected person or an object that the infected person has touched. Conjunctivitis in the babies mayalso be induced when the tear ducts are blocked or as a reaction to certain eyedrops. Sometimes it happens that the motherwith some sexually transmitted disease, such as chlamydia or gonorrhea, passesthe infection to the child.