Oh the life of a Grammie is never dull. My little ones are suffering one of the most common childhood traumas in the world. Pink Eye! So the question of the day is: How do you get a toddler to let you put those drops in her eyes without resorting to sitting on them?
A child of that age doesn’t have the reasoning power to understand that what mommy and daddy are doing is going to help her. So what do you do?
I remember well that once one of mine got the pink eye, it didn’t matter what I did to isolate the one child, the others would come up with the same ailment within a day or two. I doesn’t matter how often you wash their pillowcases or bedding, that little bug finds its way to the other children in the family. But, not all is lost. It is a good time to teach the kiddies about washing their hands frequently. conjunctivitis (pink eye) is highly contagious and causes reddening of the eyes and sometimes sticky discharge from the eyes. When they are napping, the eyes sometimes will seal shut because of the discharge coating their eyelashes. When this happens and a child has never had this condition before, it can be a cause of serious panic for the child. Not to worry though, snuggling the child and a warm compress on the eyes will get them open again in no time.
In the years when my children were going through this I found that good snuggle time was the ideal time to explain the situation to the child. I also found that using the eye drops on myself first, so that they could see there was no discomfort involved, helped a lot. I would try to make a game out of it for them. Treats and rewards worked as well. The treats didn’t have to be “sugar” related either. Reading an extra book, playing their favorite game twice, having their crayons ready with a new coloring book would all work. It only takes getting those drops in once for them to realize that it really isn’t a big deal and that they feel better afterwards. Kids can make that leap of understanding quite quickly.
It is a great time to teach the kiddies about clean hands, and to encourage the practice of washing their hands regularly. Oh and keep putting in those drops even after the pink has gone, a few days to make sure that all the “bugs” causing the problem are eradicated!
Good Luck to the mommies and daddies that are faced with this problem, thank God it’s a relatively easy one to deal with and the outcomes are great!
Do you have any great ideas on how to coax a toddler in this type of case? What worked for you? Stay tuned, if there are some really good answers out there I will post them for you to use the next time it happens.