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Regularly scheduled eye exams, starting as early as six months are important for the early diagnosis of childhood eye problems. There are numerous things that your optometrist will check for, and in the case that a problem is found, a treatment plan will be followed
your child will be treated by our Optometrists. If surgical treatment is required, we will refer to a pediatric ophthalmologist.
In this months information session we will look at Amblyopia, commonly known as “Lazy Eye”.
Amblyopia, commonly known as “Lazy Eye” is the condition where we see decreased vision in one or both eyes which is not correctable by regular eye glasses or contact lenses.
What causes Amblyopia?
During a child’s eye development any interference with their clear image of the world can cause favoritism in one eye. This leaves the other eye (the “Lazy Eye”) underdeveloped. This can be caused by other eye afflictions such as astigmatism, near (or far) sightedness, cataracts or injury to the eye(s).
How is it detected?
Amblyopia is typically detected during a routine eye examination. Tools other than the 20/20 chart are often required in detection. Tests such as eye alignment, refraction and dilating eye drops may be used.
Some signs and symptoms:
- Poor vision in one or both eyes.
- Avoiding close work.
- Cloudiness in one eye.
- Squinting or favouring one eye while viewing television or reading.
- A Slight turning of one eye.
- Movement or tilting of the head while viewing items.
Methods of Treatment
The key to treating Amblyopia is early diagnosis. Often treated by employing special glasses, using drops, patching and in some cases vision therapy.
Amblyopia is another good reason why early and regular eye examinations are important in a developing infant or pre-school child. Best chance for correction is in children of five or less, though it’s somewhat successfully treated up to the age of eight.
How does a contact lens work?
Contact lenses are delicately crafted, very thin optical discs generally smaller than a dime, worn directly on the eye. They are comfortably held in place by a natural layer of tears present between the contact lens and the cornea. Contacts eliminate the barriers encountered with spectacles that interfere with the line of sight above, below and to the sides of the eye, offering outstanding peripheral vision. In addition, contacts can reduce or eliminate the image distortion sometimes caused by eyeglasses.
General Safety Tips For Contact Lens Wearers:
If you wear contact lens here are some important safety tips:
- Visit an eyecare professional for a complete eye examination every 12 months or more frequently if directed by your eyecare professional.
- Use only contact lenses if prescribed by a licensed eyecare practitioner.
- NEVER swap contact lens with another person.
- Don’t wear lenses longer than prescribed, nor when sleeping unless otherwise directed.
- If eyes become red or irritated, remove the lenses immediately and consult your doctor.
- Replace contacts as recommended by your eyecare professional because they wear out over time.
- Throw away disposable lenses after recommended wearing period.
Use only sterile solutions. Throw out any that have expired. Once a solution bottle is opened, it is prone to contamination. Avoid touching bottle tips to surfaces or with your fingers. Do not combine solutions unless directed by your eyecare professional. Do not switch a brand of solution without first consulting your eyecare professional.
There are many different types of solutions, know the one that is correct for you.
- Cleaning solution: removes debris, dirt and mucus from the lens
- Disinfecting solution: safely and effectively reduces microbial contamination on the lens that can cause eye infections
- Multi-purpose solution: a single solution that rinses and disinfects lenses and may also contain protein removers
- Peroxide solution: Comprised of two separate components, one (peroxide) for disinfecting for overnight storage, and a neutralizer (sometimes the neutralizer is replaced with a disc)
- Enzyme cleaner/Protein remover tablets or solutions: used to reduce protein build-up from tears that cling to the lens causing discomfort
- Rewetting solution/ Comfort drops: used as a lubricant while wearing your lenses to increase comfort levels
- Rinsing solution: eliminates debris and other solutions in preparation for usage