Friday, April 4, 2008

Pink Eye In Children

Over the past 25 years, I've seen many cases of crusty eyes in children. Over the course of 6 years, when I was the Office Manager at a preschool, I noticed that many children who started out with a cold, ended up with pink eye. What I learned was that these children would wipe their nose with their hand, and then wipe their eye, thus transferring the virus from the nose to the eye.

Pink eye, or the technical name of conjunctivitis, is an infection that causes inflammation, redness and itching of the eye. Pus forms and is often white, yellow or green (I've seen all colors). It can drain from the eye, or you may just notice that your child wakes up with "sleep" in the eye, or the eye is so crusty that the child can't open it. Using a clean cloth with warm water on the eye can help to soften the crust and you can gently clean the eye so that your child is more comfortable.

When I had my first baby, I called the doctor, and he prescribed drops. Sometimes the doctor will provide an ointment instead. Both can be applied to the eye, but they are prescription drugs, and I've learned of some natural remedies that worked really well on my 5 babies.

I have used Colloidal Silver Liquid successfully and I've also put drops of fresh breast milk into the infected eye because breast milk has anti-bacterial properties.

I only used the prescription drops with my first baby because I didn't know any different. However, once I learned about using breast milk and colloidal silver, I found that the prescription drops weren't necessary.

If baby has a cold, it will run it's course, though it may take a couple of weeks.

You can always call the doctor's office, describe what you think it might be, and ask for their advice. I avoid the doctor's office as much as possible, because I don't like to expose my children to all the other sick children (and germs) that are there.

Sometimes a visit to the doctor is prudent - other times just a phone call can put your mind at ease.

What I do most often is to consult my good natural baby care books that I have on my bookshelf and I treat a mild illness myself. Here are some of my favorite books that I have referred to time and time again. They've paid for themselves many times over, by saving me doctor visits.

Whenever a friend or neighbor has asked for ideas on how they could help their child during a mild illness, I've taken all of these books and looked up the illness or symptoms in each book, then gave the mom lots of different ideas, and they could choose which they wanted to try. Sometimes they had things in their cupboard that they could use, other times they would go to the store and pick something up.

These are my favorite books for treating childhood illnesses.

How To Raise A Healthy Child In Spite Of Your Doctor
by Dr. Robert S. Mendelsohn M.D.
This is my all time favorite book and it helped me the most with my first baby, by giving me confidence in knowing that my mothering instinct was correct. Dr. Mendelsohn encourages moms to treat minor illnesses at home without running to the doctor all the time.

Smart Medicine for a Healthier Child: A Practical A-to-Z Reference to Natural and Conventional Treatment
This book gives wonderful ideas for natural ways to treat illness, and conventional ways too. A handy reference!

Prescription for Nutritional Healing : A Practical A-to-Z Reference to Drug-Free Remedies Using Vitamins, Minerals, Herbs & Food Supplements
Again - one of my favorites. Very comprehensive and helpful for determining what my children have.

Healthy Healing: A Guide to Self Healing for Everyone
This is a wonderful book for helping the entire family to overcome illness in a natural, healthy way.

I really can't choose just one book, as they are all so very good, and I literally get them all out when I'm dealing with an illness in our family, and I look at them all. I don't read each one - just use them as a reference for a particular illness.

I hope you get as much out of these books as I have. They have given me great peace of mind when helping my children to overcome their illnesses.

Kirstyn Sierra
Mother of 5
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