Amblyopia, which is also called lazy eye, is a condition commonly seen in many of our younger patients. Amblyopia comes about when vision in one eye is stifled. This might occur if a child isn’t able to see properly through one eye because of issues with distance vision, and in some cases, astigmatism, or something else that could be obstructing clear vision in that eye. Working in conjunction with corrective glasses, one of the treatment options is putting an eye patch on your child’s eye for a number of hours per day to stimulate sight in the lazy eye. Patching.
A lot of parents have trouble fitting their kids with patches, particularly if they’re on the younger side. Their stronger eye is covered with the patch, which infringes on their ability to see. It may be challenging to rationalize the patch to your young child; that they must patch their eye to improve their weaker eye, but can’t happen successfully unless their strong eye is patched, which temporarily limits their vision. But don’t worry; there are several methods to encourage your child to wear their patch. Employing the use of a reward system with stickers given when the patch is worn can be successful for some kids. There are a variety of adhesive patches sold in many fun designs. Take advantage of all the options and make it fun by allowing them to select their patch every day and then putting a sticker on the chart when the patch is properly worn. For kids who are a little older, tell them about the mechanics of wearing a patch, and talk about it as an exercise to help their vision in the long term.
Perhaps wear a patch along with your child, or have a favorite stuffed animal or doll wear a patch too. For very young children, there are flotation wings to stop them from reaching their eyes to remove the patch.
A good outcome is dependent on you to stay focused on your goal of improving your child’s vision and ultimately, their quality of life.