What is Causing Your Child’s Lazy Eye? Understanding the Condition

amblyopiaLazy eyes, which are also sometimes referred to as amblyopia, is a condition that affects vision, causing one ‘good’ eye to compensate for the other. It’s a really common health issue; in fact, around 1 in 50 children will develop it, and most are diagnosed by the age of 4.

Why Has Your Child Got a Lazy Eye?

There are a number of reasons why your child might have a lazy eye, but don’t worry, it’s nothing you’ve done wrong! Often, people assume that children have the same vision as we do, but actually, that’s not the case at all. They have to learn to see, and their brains have to master the art of interpreting signals sent from the eye.

This process takes a surprisingly long time. In fact, it can be up to 5 years before a child can see as clearly as a grown-up. If something adversely affects the eye as it’s developing, the signals to the brain are also affected, causing the brain to rely more on the ‘better’ eye. This causes the lazy eye. Read More

Macular Degeneration: What Causes Your Eyesight to Fail?

macular degenerationWhen it comes to macular degeneration, there is no single root cause. A number of factors can contribute to the development of this condition, and it’s difficult to predict whether or not you’ll get it, especially when you’re young.

However, one thing is for certain. There are things you can do to minimize your risk of developing macular degeneration, which you should ideally start doing today.

Factors that Cause Macular Degeneration

  • Family history. Regrettably, this condition is hereditary. If a family member suffers from it, particularly a parent or sibling, this increases your chances of developing it too.

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Eyesight and Modern Technology: How to Prevent Eye Damage

phoneIn the 21st century, we are surrounded by screens. From smartphones and tablets to laptops and Kindles, we use technology to communicate, entertain ourselves, relax, stay fit and of course, to work.

In fact, rather amazingly, recent research shows that the average person in the US spends over five hours a day staring at a screen. This has raised concerns on the effects of screens on eyesight, and whether over-exposure to technology could be damaging the health of your eyes.

Top Tips to Prevent Eye Damage When Using Technology

Whilst research is still underway into exactly how bad technology is for eyesight, certain studies have already suggested that staring at screens for too long can cause squinting, over-straining of the eye muscles, and headaches.

Here’s some tips to help you maintain good eyesight whilst using your tablet, laptop or smartphone. Read More

Eye Examinations: Why It’s Vital to Have Regular Eye Tests to Protect Your Vision

eye exam 1According to the National Association for Eye and Vision Research, blindness is one of the biggest fears in this country. However, in spite of this concern, many people still skip regular eye examinations, which could help prevent loss of eyesight in older age.

Eye Problems: A Growing Concern

In the US alone, there are around 41 million people suffering with blindness, poor vision or an eye condition related to age. This number is predicted to rise to 64 million in just 17 years’ time. Some of the most common problems are cataracts, glaucoma (around 2.7 million people over the age of 40 suffer from this) and macular degeneration. Read More

Sties and Chalazia: Differences and Similarities

styeWhat are sties?

Sties are one of the eye diseases that cause a warm, red bump on the eyelid. Most sties emerge along the border of the eyelid. When a sty arises within the eyelid, it is known as an internal hordeolum.

What are Chalazia?

Chalazia are lumps formed within the eyelid. Though they may resemble sties, usually they are larger than sties and they may not cause harm.

Similarities between Sties and Chalazia

Sties and Chalazia are sudden-start localized bumps of the eyelid.  Read More

Strabismus and Amblyopia: Differences and Similarities

young doctorAmblyopia is a condition in which there is poor vision in the eye which did not develop normal sight during early childhood. This condition is commonly known as lazy eye. It is normal for only one eye to be affected but it can happen to both eyes.

Causes

Amblyopia can be caused by strabismus or squint eyes. It is an imbalance in the positioning of the two eyes. The eyes can cross in (esotropia) or turn out (exotropia). The child uses only the better eye for vision as the crossed eye turns off to avoid “double vision” and resulting in the crossed eye failing to develop good vision.

Unequal focus can cause amblyopia. Unequal focus is a condition where one eye is more nearsighted or farsighted than the other eye. This can be corrected by the wearing spectacles.

Cataract may lead to poor vision. Cataract is a disease there is clouding of the clear lens in the eye. Treatment is necessary to remove the cataract. Read More

When to Check for Inheritable Eye Diseases

mother and daughterAccording to the World Health Organization (WHO), there are many genetic eye diseases that that are fairly common across the populations in the world. These diseases are transmitted from the parents to their children. It is encouraging to note that not all genetic eye diseases lead to blindness. Although, these diseases have been around for many years, there is still a lot of research needed to find out how to treat them with success. The good news is that over the past twenty years, there has been a lot of progress in the knowledge regarding genetic eye diseases. However, WHO admits that there are no concrete global statistics about the problem, although estimates indicate that about 60% of the cases of blindness in children are caused by genetic eye diseases.

Some of the conditions present at birth include retinal degeneration, congenital glaucoma, cataracts, eye malformations and optic atrophy. It has also been observed that up to 40% of the cases of ocular misalignment can be traced back to a family history of the condition. Doctors have been working extremely hard to identify the inherited gene that is responsible for this condition. Read More

Astigmatism: Causes and Treatments

astigmatismAstigmatism is a common eye disorder that normally results in blurred vision. A person’s cornea is usually spherical in shape. Understanding how it works is important to understand the effects of astigmatism. When light enters the cornea, it is reflected in all directions, thereby causing a focused image to be formed on the retina. However, when one suffers from astigmatism, the shape of the cornea tends to be distorted, and, as a result, it becomes difficult to form sharp and focused images, hence the blurred vision. A closer look at astigmatism: causes and treatment will help you understand the condition further.  Read More

What is Laser Cataract Surgery?

eyesLaser cataracts surgery is a type of eye surgery that can be performed by your eye doctor in order to treat cataracts. Cataracts meanwhile are cloudy patches that appear in the eye due to a build-up of proteins on the crystalline lens of the eye. These can range from being somewhat translucent to being completely opaque and will obstruct the vision of the patient by blocking incoming light.

Cataracts become increasingly common in old age and are one of the leading causes of impaired vision among the elderly. They can cause yellowing of color vision, near sightedness, blind spots and eventually completely vision loss.

There are a range of causes that can lead to cataracts including exposure to ultraviolet light and radiation, while Read More

How to Protect Your Eyes if You Use the Computer a Lot

eyes computerIf you use the computer a lot, as part of your job perhaps or just in your spare time, then you might find yourself becoming worried about your eyesight. Many of us associate computers, TVs and screens in general with becoming ‘square eyed’ and the idea that programmers and computer hackers all wear glasses has become a persistent stereotype.

The question is though: do you really need to worry? And what can you do to protect your eyes?

The Myth and the Reality

The good news is that screens aren’t actually bad for your eyes. You can use the computer as much as you like and play as many games as you want and not have to worry about it affecting your vision negatively.

One study found that the closer people sat to the TV, the worse their eyesight was. In reality though, the methodology of this study was flawed. The only reason they found a correlation was that people with poor eyesight needed to sit closer.
More recent studies have actually found that playing computer games increases your visual acuity and the ‘resolution’ of your eyes. This is because the act of constantly scanning the horizon for enemies trains us to become more ‘efficient’ at seeing!

How to Protect Your Eyes

That said, it still doesn’t hurt to take extra precautions to protect your eyes if you want to avoid a trip to the eye doctor and there are some things you need to be weary of. Read More