Amblyopia, also known as lazy eye, is often found in children. As the most common visual impairment, lazy eye is often treatable, with most patients continuing their lives with healthy vision. If you feel your child may be suffering from amblyopia, there are treatment options available so that they can go on to lead healthy, normal lives.
When a child’s brain is developing, it is extremely sensitive to how often the eyes are used. Amblyopia develops when one eye is not used enough, and the other tends to compensate. As a result, the brain rewires itself to not need the under-used eye. While it is most common for young children to develop this condition around the ages of six to nine, with professionals agreeing that attempts to correct it should be made before adolescence, those older than nine can still benefit from care.
Other eye conditions can often lead to amblyopia. Glaucoma has been known to damage vision and can often lead to the use of one eye over the other. Strabismus can also lead to a lazy eye since the eyes are already often crossed. Cataracts are another issue that tends to cloud the lens of the eye and can make it difficult to see.
Many patients find out they have amblyopia once they visit their eye doctors. A routine exam is an important factor in determining whether or not your child has problems with his or her vision.
Treatment is often easy and requires only patching the stronger eye, forcing the weaker one to do most of the work. While your child may have difficulty seeing at first, it doesn’t take long for the weak eye to adjust. Drops made of atropine are sometimes also recommended. This dilates the pupil in the strong eye to blur its vision, requiring the weak eye to do most of the work.
Fortunately, amblyopia is very treatable and most patients maintain strong vision through adulthood. However, children are unlikely to know that there is something wrong with their vision in the first place, therefore visiting an eye doctor from a young age is incredibly important. Children should have an eye exam once a year to ensure healthy vision and optimal eye care.
If you suspect that your child may be suffering from lazy eye, schedule a consultation with Dr. Ghosheh today. For any vision-related questions or concerns, contact us for expert medical advice.