Along with wellness checks and vision screening, Lone Star Vision children’s services include diagnosing and treating common childhood disorders and vision challenges. We believe that healthy eyes expand the world of opportunities for our children, enhancing every aspect of life from the classroom to the social scene. Many common childhood vision deficiencies, like strabismus (crossed eyes) are correctable if diagnosed early. Early intervention and vision therapy, when appropriate, are two of the best gifts you can give your children.
Understanding Strabismus (Crossed Eyes)
Many people use the terms crossed eyes and lazy eye to describe the same condition, but this is not accurate. Left untreated, strabismus may lead to a lazy eye, but the two conditions have distinctly different origins and physiological complexities. Optometrists may refer to strabismus by other names, such as wandering eye or tropia.
Where tropia is easily seen, lazy eye syndrome doesn’t always have obvious outward symptoms. Medically known as amblyopia, lazy eye originates when the brain blocks all or part of the visual input. Suppression may result in permanent dysfunction if left untreated.
Strabismus stems from faulty brain-eye muscle communication that causes a misalignment of the eyes. Crossed eyes are more prevalent in young children. It isn’t unusual for newborns to be born with mild to moderate cases that gradually resolve on their own before they are six months old. If the symptoms persist beyond six months of age, your optometrist may recommend vision therapy to prevent long-term problems.
Common Types and Strabismus Treatment
Depending on whether the misalignment is significant (large-angle) or minimal (small-angle), and the age of the child affected, our Lone Star Vision optometrist may recommend a comprehensive strabismus treatment plan that includes one or more of the following options.
- Prescription eye drops
- Eye patches
- Vision therapy: computerized programs and optical devices used to retrain the eyes to focus, intentionally align the eyes and improve eye movements.
In severe cases where the eye muscles are not functioning properly, surgery to correct the muscle problems may be required. During surgery, the muscles may be moved, strengthen or weakened to improve function and control.
The eyes may turn inward, as in estropia, or turn outward, as in exotropia strabismus. Every case is unique and may require a different vision therapy and treatment plan. It’s important to discuss your child’s case with your Lone Star Vision doctor so you understand the goals and expectations of each treatment component.
How Can Lone Star Vision Help?
Corrective therapies, including vision therapy, are very effective for treating childhood conditions, such as crossed eyes and lazy eye. For most cases, conservative, non-invasive measures are the first choice. However, our doctor will prescribe the best treatment plan for each individual.
Does your child have trouble at school or playing sports? He or she may be struggling with blurred vision, lazy eye or other eye disorders that are easy to correct if identified early.