Eye infections

​Conjunctivitis is a very common disease, especially in small children under the age of two. It may be caused by a bacterial or viral infection, an allergic reaction or a foreign body (something in the eye).

Treatment

 
Children suffering from a common cold often have red and watery eyes and sticky discharge on the eye lashes, especially in the mornings. This is typically caused by a virus. Rinse the eyes with tap water. The condition does not require any other form of treatment.

An allergic or irritant conjunctivitis does not require antibiotic treatment, but your physician may prescribe eye drops to alleviate the symptoms.

When conjunctivitis is caused by a bacterial infection, the eye produces a yellowish discharge. Seek medical assistance to get a prescription for eye drops or ointment. It is also recommended that you clean the eyes several times a day with tap water. Remove sticky discharge by rinsing from the outer corner towards the inner corner of the eye. Rinse the eyes before applying eye drops or ointment. Your physician should also check the ears, because the same bacteria cause infections in the eyes and ears, and eye infection may be followed by an ear infection a few days later.  

When can the child return to day care?

 

The child can return to day care, because bacteria and viruses causing conjunctivitis are the same that cause respiratory tract infections. The spread of the disease can be managed by washing your hands thoroughly and avoiding rubbing your eyes.