Vision is a learned process. It requires ideal conditions for proper development. If these conditions are not ideal and the brain receives abnormal or unequal visual input during infancy or childhood, it results in a condition called Amblyopia or “lazy eye”.
A child with Amblyopia or Lazy Eye develops what appears to be a slow-reactive eye because the nerve pathways from the eye to the brain are underdeveloped. This underdevelopment means that the affected eye will send fewer neuro-electrical signals to the brain than the unaffected eye, making it appear “lazy”. If left untreated, the pathways through which these signals travel may weaken and not develop properly, damaging the child’s vision.
Amblyopia causes loss of vision in one or both eyes before the age of 6. It is caused by either an eye turn, a deprivation or from refractive error. This vision damage and/ or loss of vision caused by Amblyopia affects the efficiency of the visual system as the patient looses their binocularity. Amblyopia can also negatively effect:
- Depth perception
- Reading and learning abilities
- Sports abilities
- And more
Treatment options include a combination of eyeglasses, drops, vision therapy, and/ or eye patching. Vision therapy will teach patients how to use their two eyes as a team. This type of treatment should be done at an early age, upon diagnosis, as the prognosis will be better due to the child’s brain being highly plastic.
If your child has been diagnosed with Amblyopia, treatment is available to prevent further vision loss. Visit Dr. D’Orio Eye Care Optometrists in North York to have your child examined and/or treated for Amblyopia. Call us now at: 416.661.5555 (North York location) or 416.656.2020 (Toronto location) and Dr. D’Orio Eye Care Associates will be happy to assist you.