Excessive Blinking in Children

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Excessive Blinking in Children
Excessive Blinking in Children (Image: apdk/Flickr.com)

If you notice your child blinking excessively on a regular basis, there are many possible causes. Frequent blinking is often caused by a minor problem, but it may signal a more serious condition.

Tic Disorder

Frequent blinking in children may be caused by a tic disorder. Tics are uncontrollable movements, and they may be transient or chronic. A tic is considered chronic when it lasts more than a year. Chronic tics affect less than 1 percent of children, according to the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychology.

Tourette's Syndrome

When chronic body and vocal tics are both present, a child may have Tourette's syndrome. A vocal tic may be as subtle as frequent throat clearing.

Eye Irritation

Children may blink excessively if they have eye irritation. Allergies, dry eyes and foreign bodies in the eye can cause discomfort that leads to frequent blinking.

Eye Abnormalities

A November 2001 study published in the Journal of Pediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus found that eye abnormalities were a common cause of excessive blinking in children. Problems may exist with the eyelid, front of the eye, the ability to focus light or crossing of the eyes.

Stress

Frequent eye blinking may be caused by stress. Identifying and reducing stressors in your child's life can help.

Warning

Rarely, excessive blinking may be caused by a more serious disorder. Have your child examined by a doctor to determine the cause of frequent blinking.

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