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In order to have adequate vision, the eyes and the brain must operate as a team. When this system breaks down, a condition called amblyopia, also known as lazy eye, can result. With most occurrences of ambylopia the actual eyes are typically in good health yet visual acuity cannot be achieved by just the use of prescription lenses. Left untreated lazy eye can result in serious visual impairment, even loss of sight in that eye.
Lazy eye is the most common vision disorder in children. Usually beginning as an infant developmental problem, the condition is often challenging to discern. Early diagnosis and treatment improve the chances of full recovery. Treatment is usually faster and more effective for those who start prior to adolescence.
Therefore it is important to have your child’s vision checked early on in development. The American Optometric Association recommends that children receive a complete eye exam by the age of half a year and again when the child turns three.
What are the Causes of Amblyopia (Lazy Eye)?
Amblyopia can be the result of any condition that affects typical vision development or use of the eyes. One common cause is strabismus, a condition where the eyes are not properly aligned. Such misalignment can cause the eyes to cross in (esotropia) or turn out (exotropia) and therefore aren’t able to work together. Sometimes amblyopia is caused when the eyes have different levels of acuity. This is the result of a condition called anisometropia. On occasion, amblyopia is caused by other optical diseases such as a cataract or some other pathological impairment.
How is Amblyopia Treated?
Treatment for lazy eye is directed at attaining proper binocular vision. Along with the use of prescription eyeglasses or contacts, the most common way to do this involves strengthening the weaker eye by inhibiting the use of the stronger. There are a number of options to do this and the treatment plan is chosen depending on the individual circumstances and the decision of the eye doctor.
Frequently doctors will prescribe a patch used to occlude the good eye. A patch compels the patient to use the weaker eye, which promotes proper sight in the underdeveloped eye and assists the visual processing system to develop properly. Nevertheless success with patching largely depends on compliance with wearing the patch, which can be difficult especially in the case of children.
Some eye care professionals choose to use atropine. When a drop of atropine is placed in the strong eye, this will obscure the vision and therefore stimulate the use of the weaker eye.
Other treatment options include vision therapy also known as orthoptics to train the eyes to work together as a team and in some cases surgery to realign the eyes. Special contact lenses or other aides to improve sight are also sometimes tried.
Because lazy eye involves a disruption in the proper development of the visual system, the younger the age at which treatment starts, the more chance there is of success. Nevertheless, there are many factors that are involved and therefore anyone who thinks they or their child has amblyopia should schedule an appointment as soon as possible with their eye doctor If you are looking for lazy eye treatment in Frisco, TX, be in touch to book a visit. Amblyopia doesn’t heal itself so don’t delay in starting to restore your vision!