surma to a newborn's eyes
Image Credit: Boldsky

The application of Surma, also known as kajal or kohl, to the eyes has been a practice in various cultures due to its perceived medicinal and cosmetic benefits. However, when it comes to applying surma in a newborn baby’s eyes, there is a debate regarding its safety.

In certain traditions, it is customary to apply surma to a newborn’s eyes soon after birth as a means of warding off evil spirits and protecting against infections. Nonetheless, recent years have witnessed reports of lead poisoning and other health issues associated with the use of surma in babies. A study conducted in India found that more than half of the tested surma samples contained dangerous levels of lead. On the contrary, some parents strongly advocate for the benefits of surma in their baby’s eyes.

According to proponents, using surma in a newborn’s eyes is believed to have antimicrobial properties, safeguarding the baby against infections. It is also thought to stimulate tear production, preventing dryness and maintaining moisture in the eyes. Additionally, Surma is believed to enhance vision and alleviate eye strain, which can be particularly beneficial for babies exposed to bright lights and screens.
However, there are risks associated with using surma in a newborn’s eyes. The primary concern is the presence of lead in certain types of surma, which can be harmful if ingested or absorbed by the body. Lead poisoning can lead to developmental delays, learning difficulties, and behavioral issues. Other risks include eye irritation, infection, and allergic reactions.

It is crucial to ensure the baby’s environment is clean and free from dust and irritants. If the baby experiences persistent eye problems or symptoms, seeking medical advice from a qualified healthcare professional is important.
Re-reported from the article originally published in Boldsky

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