Crossed Eyes

10 Pointers to Take Care of Your Babys Eyes

Dr Preeti Patil Chhablani, Pediatric Ophthalmologist and Neuro-ophthalmologist Jasti V. Ramanamma Children’s Eye Care Center L V Prasad Eye Institute Hyderabad

  1. Look for signs of eye disease early – whitish reflex in the pupils (instead of the normal black shadow), very large eyes, intense watering, redness and yellowish discharge – all these need immediate attention, so seek consultation with a pediatric eye specialist as soon as possible
  2. Avoid applying external chemicals – this includes kajal and eyeliners – they can cause allergic reactions since your baby’s eyes are very sensitive
  3. If your baby was born prematurely, the risk of developing eye problems is higher – so an eye examination is required at about one month of age to make sure that there are no retinal problems and then at about 6-8 months of age to look for squint or ‘cross eyes’ and to check if your baby needs glasses.
  4. Mild whitish yellow discharge from the eyes, especially in the mornings, is common in the first few months - Clean your baby’s eyes with warm (boiled and cooled) water and clean cotton swabs. Do not constantly rub the baby’s eyes with tissues / clothes.
  5. A little ‘squinting’ or misalignment of the eyes is common in the first few months of life – but if you feel your baby is squinting beyond 3-4 months of age, or if the eyes are ‘shaking’ or ‘wiggling’ (nystagmus), a consultation with a pediatric eye specialist is required.
  6. Avoid exposure to excessive dust, polluted air, chemical vapours, smoke, etc.
  7. When your baby starts crawling, use brightly coloured toys, lights, etc. to engage his / her attention – this will help with vision stimulation and encourage hand eye coordination
  8. If your baby’s general development is delayedand there is a delay in achieving motor milestones such as neck holding, sitting up or crawling, there maybe associated visual problems – an eye examination is required so that early intervention can be made possible.
  9. Always keep sharp objects like pens, pencils, knives, forks, etc. out of reach of your baby – accidental eye injuries are common, even in infancy, and may result in severe visual impairment
  10. 10. Maintain a healthy diet with the appropriate vitamins and minerals – just like the skin or certain other organs, eyes can be damaged by vitamin deficiencies.