What Is Amblyopia?Amblyopia is a condition that occurs when the brain and the eye don't work together properly to recognize images. One eye is weaker than the other, and as time passes, the brain starts to rely more on the stronger eye, and the vision in the other eye worsens. As many as 3% of children have amblyopia. If the child's vision is left untreated, the condition can continue into adulthood. However, this condition is usually easy to identify and catch early on in vision screening.
Common Causes of AmblyopiaThe most common cause of amblyopia is an imbalance in the muscles that position the eyes. The muscles will stop functioning together as they should for proper sight. This ceasing of function can cause the eyes to turn out or turn in - unlike normal vision in which the eyes match each other. A difference in your vision between the eyes, like refractive errors, can also cause amblyopia. Significant differences between your eyes regarding nearsightedness, farsightedness, or astigmatism can also lead to this condition.
How Amblyopia Affects Your LifeIf your or your loved one's amblyopia is left untreated, it can severely impact the quality of life. Amblyopia causes poor vision and poor depth perception. This makes learning especially difficult for young ones in school. It alters a person's ability to read easily and go about day-to-day tasks. It may be difficult to judge distances and so playing sports, driving, and basic coordination can all be difficult activities for those with amblyopia to excel at. Untreated amblyopia can also lead to anxiety and other mental health problems. These problems are not uncommon when you have vision conditions that affect your quality of life.
Common Amblyopia SymptomsYou may experience several symptoms of amblyopia, including:
- Poor depth perception
- Shutting or squinting the lazy eye
- Head tilting
- Blurry vision
- An eye that moves outward or inward
Amblyopia TreatmentNot all treatments for amblyopia will work for every individual, so you should be sure to speak extensively to an expert. They can ensure that you get a proper diagnosis and that one of the following treatments for amblyopia is a good fit for you. Surgery Surgery for amblyopia focuses on repositioning the eye muscles or adjusting their length. This surgery usually involves wearing an eye patch for a certain period of time. Results vary widely from patient to patient, with anywhere from a 30% to 80% success rate. Very rarely does surgery lead to permanent vision loss. If the idea of surgery is alarming, don’t worry! There are other treatment options available. Eye Patches A doctor may give you an eye patch for your amblyopia which is worn over the stronger eye. This helps strengthen the weaker eye. Be sure to follow your doctor's instructions on how long to wear the patch and when to rest your eyes. This treatment can be helpful for many with amblyopia, but it is typically ineffective and cumbersome for children. Eye Drops Doctors might prescribe eye drops that blur the vision in your dominant eye. The blurred vision in your stronger eye forces your weaker eye to work harder and become stronger. This process is similar to eye patch treatment. Prism Glasses You can also see a specialist about getting prism glasses to treat your amblyopia. These glasses have special lenses that help bend light so that each of your eyes gets a clear picture to send to the brain resulting in better vision. Eyecare specialists can create the ideal prism glasses for you or your loved one. Prism glasses look just like regular glasses and can be a great treatment option.
Prism Glasses and AmblyopiaSpecialists also often use prism glasses to treat people who have binocular vision dysfunction (BVD). This condition involves a misalignment of the eyes, to which the body responds by forcing the eye muscles to try to correct the alignment. These corrections cause eye muscle strain and a variety of symptoms. The way that prism glasses bend light also treats those with amblyopia. These glasses ensure that each eye is getting the same image and sending that same image to the brain. This synchronization stops your brain from forcing your eyes to work harder and takes the pressure off your weaker eye. Getting prism lenses is also a simpler option than surgery. There are risks with any surgery, and in the case of surgery to treat amblyopia, there is no guarantee of positive results. To get specialized prism lenses, visit Vision Specialist of Michigan. We can outfit you with high-quality prism lenses explicitly made to correct your eye issues and symptoms.
Top Amblyopia Treatment at Vision SpecialistsYou or your loved one should not have to live with amblyopia's symptoms and side effects. Contact us at Vision Specialists of Michigan so we can outfit you with the proper lenses to correct your vision.