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What can cause excessive eye blinking in children?

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Tics, stress, intermittent exotropia, refractive error and problems with the eyelids or the front surface of the eyes can cause excessive eye blinking in children, states the American Association for Pediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus. Excessive eye blinking is rarely an indication of an undiagnosed neurological condition.

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Blinking is a natural reflex that guards the eyes from bright light, dryness and foreign objects. Blinking also regulates tears. Newborns blink only two times a minute, and blinking increases to about 14 to 17 times per minute in teenage years to adulthood, notes the American Association for Pediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus. Blinking becomes excessive when it occurs more frequently than normal. It may involve one or both eyes and can also be connected with other movements such as tics of the head, face or neck.

A thorough examination is performed to assess excessive blinking, explains the American Association for Pediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus. Problems such as corneal abrasion, ingrown lashes, conjunctivitis, eye dryness and foreign bodies are diagnosed using an instrument known as slit lamp. This instrument is a special microscope that magnifies the eyes, and is also able to detect if glasses are required. Strabismus, or in turning or out turning of the eye, is diagnosed through examining the eye movement. Excessive blinking is treated using eye drops or ointments, and glasses are prescribed if blurry vision is causing the blinking,

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