There are many reasons to go to the eye doctor that are not necessarily related to a person's eyeglasses prescription, one of these reasons is for Lazy Eye treatment. Lazy eye is another name for the eye condition amblyopia. With this condition, one eye develops faster and better than the other and basically takes over. Without treatment, the "bad eye" (or lazy eye) gives up. The condition can start to manifest itself as early as infancy, which is just one of the reasons to start trips to the eye doctor very early. Our staff at Arvada Optometric Center can diagnose and treat this condition.
Types and Causes of Amblyopia
Depending on the origin of a child's lazy eye, it may be treated differently by the eye doctor, so it is important to pin down why one eye is favored early in order to make sure the right method of correction is being employed.
- Strabismic amblyopia happens when there is a misalignment of the eyes
- Refractive amblyopia happens when there are refractive errors in the eyes, such as nearsightedness, farsightedness, or astigmatism, and when the eye if affected more than the other eye
- Deprivation amblyopia is caused by an obstruction to one eye, often this happens when a baby has congenital cataracts, which occur in infants rather than adults. Early cataract surgery can restore affected vision development in these cases
Correcting and Treating Lazy Eye
If the eyes are misaligned, it may be possible to align them surgically and then treat them with an eye patch on the good eye to encourage the use and strengthening of the "lazy" eye. Vision therapy is also prescribed in many cases in order to develop better eye teaming between the two eyes.
In some cases, children with a lazy eye condition are given eye drops rather than a patch in order to correct lazy eye symptoms. These are called atropine drops, which serve a similar purpose by blurring close-up vision in the child's good eye.
Amblyopia (lazy eye) is just one of many reasons why children need to start seeing a pediatric eye doctor early in life. When it is caught early, treatment can minimize any long-term effects and prevent the condition from causing other learning problems during the child's school years and beyond.
To learn more about Lazy eye and other childhood vision ailments, or to schedule an appointment with a pediatric optometrist, contact us at Arvada Optometric Center in Arvada, CO at (303) 424-5282.