Dark Circles Under Baby's Eyes - Causes and Remedies

Dark Circles Under Baby’s Eyes – Causes and Remedies

Medically Reviewed By
Dr. Arti Sharma (Paediatrician)
View more Paediatrician Our Panel of Experts

Dark circles aren’t as common in babies as they are in adults. If you find them, however, the cause most often is something that’s not of concern. They are usually caused by allergies and the baby not having enough sleep or being tired. In some rare cases, they could indicate an underlying problem.

What are Dark Circles and How Do They Form?

Dark circles are blemishes around the baby’s eyes that are more prominent under the eyes. There are several factors that can cause dark circles by affecting the underlying anatomy of the region. The sensitive skin around the baby’s eyes is called periorbital skin that is often thin and delicate. Underneath that skin are tiny blood vessels called infraorbital venous plexus which connect with the nose. When this region is irritated, the blood vessels swell up and appear prominent as they come closer to the skin which causes the entire area to appear as a dark circle. Dark circles can appear when some babies have nasal congestion caused by allergens such as pollen. Sinusitis can also trigger dark circles when the sinus cavities, which are hollow areas around the nose, become clogged and get infected by bacteria and other irritants.

Is It Normal for Infants to Have Dark Circles Under Their Eyes?

Yes, it’s totally normal for babies to have dark circles around their eyes. The thin skin under their eye which is richly supplied with tiny blood vessels can sometimes pop up as dark circles. If there is a family history of sensitive under-eye skin and dark circles, then the baby can be expected to have dark circles at some point.

What Do Dark Circles Under Infant’s Eyes Mean?

Most often dark circles are not a cause for concern. They are caused by tiredness, allergies or could just be genetic. In extremely rare cases, however, dark circles can be caused by a tumour. If you notice that your baby has an unusually deep dark circle, talk to your doctor immediately.

Causes of Dark Circles in Infants

Here are some common causes of dark circles in babies:

  • The most common cause is the thin delicate skin under the baby’s eyes which highlight the blood vessels making them look darker.
  • Dark circles are also genetic and can be inherited. If members of the family have it they shouldn’t be surprised if their babies have them too.
  • Some babies have relatively thinner skin compared to others which makes it look darker.
  • Babies who are tired can also show dark circles. A long day in the sun or a day without much sleep can make their skin appear pale and the skin around the eyes darker.

Causes of Dark Circles in Infants

  • In rare cases dark circles are caused by skin conditions related to bacterial infections, eczema, infection of the sinuses, respiratory infection and dehydration could also cause dark or bluish circles under the baby’s eyes.
  • Allergies are also known to cause dark circles and those types are often called as ‘allergic shiners’. Respiratory allergies and congestion of the nose can lead to a restriction of the blood flow in the veins under the eyes. This can appear prominent as a dark circle.

Remedies for A Baby’s Dark Circles

There are a few ways you can lessen your baby’s dark circles:

  • Ensure they get enough rest at proper times. Feed them healthy foods and keep them active so they have a healthy weight gain.
  • If their dark circles are caused by allergens, keep them away from pollen, dust or animals. Clean under their eyes with a clean cloth soaked in warm water.
  • Keep their hands clean and clip and file their nails to avoid unnecessary scratches on the face and eyes.

Can Dark Circles Under Eyes in Babies Be Prevented?

Except for the ones caused by allergies and tiredness, dark circles cannot be prevented. Many mothers try homemade pastes such as ubtan to remove dark circles which are not effective and can also be harmful.

Is There a Relation Between Dark Circles and Teething or Fever?

It is common for parents to associate fever and teething with dark circles but there is no evidence from research that they are related.

Are Puffy Eyes Related to Dark Circles in Babies?

No, they are not related to dark circles. Puffy eyes can be caused by long spells of crying or sleeping in an awkward position.

Are Puffy Eyes Related to Dark Circles in Babies?

Do Dark Circles Indicate Poor Health or Improper Sleep?

Contrary to the popular opinion among parents, dark circles in babies are rarely an indicator of poor health or sleep routines.

Are Dark Circles Associated with Under-eye Bags?

Under-eye bags could just be fat under the skin under your baby’s eyes and have nothing to do with dark circles.

Dark circles in almost all cases are not of concern and will resolve on their own when the underlying trigger subsides.

Also Read:

Eye Problems in Babies
Conjunctivitis (Pink Eye) in Babies
Eye Infections in Babies

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