My 7-year-old daughter has recently started to blink all the time. She went through the same thing when she was about four, but it stopped after some weeks. Now it is worse. Could there be a solution that I could look into? And what is causing this blinking anomaly?
Blinking is a normal reflex in eyes which serves as a protective mechanism to protect the eyes against dust, hot sun, water or any object coming toward it like a finger. Blinking also helps to regulate tears which nourish and clean the eyes. Blinking also occurs due to change in temperature, bright lights or conversations. Normally blinking occurs about two times per minute in a small baby, this increases gradually to 14-18/minute in adolescence and remains almost same throughout life.
Excess blinking in a 7-year-old child can occur due to refractive error of the eyes. If the vision is impaired slightly the child may blink frequently as effort to see clearly. This also increases susceptibility to chronic infections of the front portion of the eyes like chronic conjunctivitis that can exacerbate blinking. Due to increasing use of computers and smart phones, children today put eyes to greater stress and are more prone to impaired vision.
Chronic inflammation of the eyelids can also cause frequent blinking of the eyes. This can also occur due to allergy to some substance present in the environment. Sometimes deficiency of vitamin B.complex can cause weakness of muscles of eyes and frequent blinking. Mental stress can aggravate tics and can also cause frequent blinking of eyelids. Rarely is it part of serious neurological disorders.
Motivate your child to have a diet including lots of green vegetables, fresh fruits and whole grains. Playing outdoors is healthier than watching television in indoors. She should be encouraged to indulge more in outdoor games. It would also be good to get her vision checked because if there is impairment, it can be treated and corrected at the earliest.