Common eye problems in infants can fall under the heading of strabismus. Parents are often the first to detect signs of eye diseases, budding eye problems in infants and question possible eye symptoms. Do you know what to look for?
Infantile Esotropia a.k.a. Congenital Strabismus
Sometime between birth and six months of age, parents may notice these eye problems in infants. They are part and parcel of eye diseases that fall under the heading of strabismus, which indicate eye health problems expressed in improper alignment. In the case of infantile esotropia, eye symptoms include one eye – or both – turning inward. This gives the appearance of crossed eyes.
First Eye Omaha suggests that the reasons for these particular eye problems in infants may be overly tight ocular muscles or extreme farsightedness. Eye surgery before the second birthday is needed to correct muscle caused conditions while eyeglasses serve to correct farsightedness.
Amblyopia a.k.a. Lazy Eye
This is another one of the common eye problems in infants, and just like infantile esotropia, it falls under the heading of strabismus. Even though just as serious as other eye health problems, this condition does not require the actual treatment of the eye as much as it demands a brain workout.
Eye symptoms of lazy eye include excessive squinting and frequent accidents denoting a lacking or impaired depth perception. In very mild cases, these eye health problems may not even be diagnosed until later on in childhood or even adulthood. All About Vision suggests that treatment of childhood lazy eye includes wearing a patch over the “good” eye to stimulate self correction in the affected eye.
Common Eye Problems in Infants that Really Aren’t:Pseudostrabismus
Pseudostrabismus denotes the outward appearance of eye problems in infants and also toddlers associated with misaligned eyes — even though there are no actual eye health problems present. An infant’s facial features and overly wide nose bridge may give worried parents the appearance of all not being well with their child’s eyes.
The American Academy of Ophthalmology suggests that parents take a flash photo of their children and notice where the light reflects in the children’s eyes. In the case of pseudostrabismus, the light will properly reflect from the center of each pupil. Children with true strabismus eye health problems will photograph with the flash reflecting on a noticeably different location of the eye.
Important Warning about Eye Problems in Infants
Please note that nothing in this article takes the place of medical advice (the information offered by a graduate from a medical school upon the examination of your infant or toddler). Moreover, while you – as the worried parent – may be able to recognize common eye problems in infants, the actual diagnosis of eye diseases must be made by a professional. Do not self-treat of hope (sometimes in vain) that your child will outgrow any eye symptoms you believe to notice.
Kids Health suggests that eye exams must be conducted immediately after birth, during each infant well visit, at the age of 3½ and then again at age 5. Thereafter, children should routinely visit the eye doctor to make sure that their vision is healthy.