Diagnosing and Treating Lazy Eye in Children and Adults
Both eyes should develop at the same rate, but sometimes, the development in one eye lags behind the other. This difference in development is one cause of a common childhood condition known as lazy eye. In fact, up to 3% of children have this condition. When caught early, a lazy eye can be corrected, which is why you should bring your child to Chapel Hill Ophthalmology for regular eye exams.
What Are the Signs and Symptoms of Lazy Eye?
Lazy eye happens when one eye has weaker vision than the other. In many cases, others cannot tell by looking at someone that that person has a lazy eye. For instance, parents may not know that their child has this condition since it often does not cause physical changes. Additionally, children may not recognize that they have a weaker eye because the brain compensates for the difference in vision as long as both eyes open.
Signs to watch out for that may indicate lazy eye, known as amblyopia, include the following:
- Poor depth perception, which can cause clumsiness
- Blurry or double vision
- Squinting or shutting one eye to see better
- Tilting the head
- Eyes that point in different directions or don't move together
Treatment of Lazy Eye in Children
The greatest chances for successful treatment are when an eye doctor diagnoses amblyopia early. Ideally, ophthalmologists prefer to treat lazy eye in children under six to avoid long-term vision problems and other complications.
To treat this condition, eye doctors typically use some method to prevent the brain from using the stronger eye to compensate for the poor vision of the weaker one. Sometimes, a patient will have an eye patch to cover the strong eye. If a child needs corrective lenses, he may be prescribed a pair of glasses with a lens over the stronger eye that slightly blurs vision and a clear lens over the weaker eye, forcing the weaker eye to build strength. Eye drops may also be used to serve the same purpose.
Can Lazy Eye Be Fixed in Adults?
While most studies examine the treatment of amblyopia in children, ophthalmologists now have options to help adults and older children with this condition. In fact, one computer program, the RevitalVision, showed that 70.5% of patients increased their visual acuity by at least two lines on an eye chart. So, can lazy eye be fixed in adults? The answer is, yes, if you find an ophthalmologist for the right treatments.
Come to Our Clinic for Treatment of Lazy Eye Treatment in Children or Adults
If you have a lazy eye or want to get your child checked for the condition, set up a time to come see us at Chapel Hill Ophthalmology by phoning our office at (919) 942-8701. Our professional team of eye doctors and staff will give you a warm welcome and expert eye care.