Pediatric Eye Care FAQs
How can a child be tested for glasses in early childhood?
An ophthalmologist can determine if a child needs glasses through a complete eye exam. Your physician will dilate your child’s pupils to relax the eye’s focusing muscles, allowing a proper measurement. With the help of a retinascope, a handheld device used by the ophthalmologist, an accurate prescription can be obtained. It can then be determined if glasses are necessary or if the condition needs to be monitored.
Why do some children need glasses?
A child may require glasses for many reasons. A child’s vision is developing and changing every day, especially until the child is 5-6 years old. If a child has a very large need for glasses in both eyes or a significant unequal need for glasses and does not receive optical correction a defect in visual development may occur, that could become lifelong if not treated appropriately. Some children need glasses to control crossing of the eyes.
What is strabismus?
Strabismus is the misalignment of the eyes. There are different types of strabismus characterized by the direction of the misalignment, which include esotropia, exotropia, hypotropia, and hypertropia. About 4% of the U.S. population has strabismus.
What causes strabismus?
Strabismus is most often caused by a problem with the brain’s control of the eye positioning system. In other rare cases, a defect with the actual eye muscles may cause strabismus.
How is strabismus treated?
Strabismus is a condition in which the eyes are not aligned. Treatment for strabismus may include eye glasses, eye exercises, prisms, and if necessary, eye muscle surgery. The goal of treatment is to align the eyes in a position that permits the use of both eyes at the same time. Eye misalignment in early life may lead to loss of vision known as amblyopia or lazy eye.
What should I do if my child has an eye injury?
There are different recommendations for the type of injury. If the child has a chemical or liquid injury of the eye, thoroughly flush the eye with water for 10-15 minutes. Do not press or rub on the eye. After flushing the eye, immediately visit the emergency room or an ophthalmologist.
If an object is embedded in the eye, do not attempt to remove it. Immediately go to the emergency room.
Where do most eye injuries happen?
An eye injury can happen at any time. Nearly 50% of eye injuries occur in sporting events and other recreational activities; hence children and teens are more affected than other age group. Wearing proper safety equipment and taking proper precaution is important in preventing eye injuries.