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What Is Lazy Eye And How Can It Be Treated?

Lazy eye, also known as amblyopia, affects the vision of one or both eyes. It occurs when the brain does not receive clear images from one eye and learns to ignore or suppress the input from that eye. This can result in reduced vision, poor depth perception, and eye strain. If you suspect that your child is suffering from lazy eye, an eye doctor may be able to treat it.

The Origin of Lazy Eye

Lazy eye usually develops in childhood and can be caused by various factors. Refractive errors are when the eyes have different levels of nearsightedness, farsightedness, or astigmatism. The brain may have difficulty combining the images from both eyes and prefer the clearer one.

Cataracts are when the lens becomes cloudy, blocking the light from entering the eye. The brain may receive a blurred or distorted image from the affected eye and disregard it.

Testing and Diagnosis

Lazy eye can be diagnosed by an eye doctor, who will perform an eye exam and test the vision of each eye separately. The eye doctor may also use special devices or techniques to measure how well the eyes work together.


The treatment for lazy eyes depends on the cause. The goal of treatment is to improve the vision of the weaker eye and to help the brain use both eyes together. Some of the standard treatment options include glasses or contact lenses. These can correct the refractive errors that may cause lazy eye and provide a clear image to both eyes. 

Eye patching involves covering the stronger eye with a patch. This can help stimulate the vision development of the weaker eye and improve its communication with the brain.

Eye drops involve using a special eye drop called atropine in the stronger eye once a day to temporarily blur its vision. This can have a similar effect as patching by encouraging the brain to use the weaker eye.

Advanced Treatments

There are also advanced treatments, such as vision therapy. Vision therapy involves doing various exercises and activities that train the eyes to work together as a team. This can help improve both eyes' coordination, alignment, and focus.

Lazy eye can be treated successfully if detected and treated early. However, if left untreated, it can lead to permanent vision loss in the affected eye. Therefore, your child must have regular eye exams, especially if they have any risk factors or symptoms of lazy eye. If you suspect your child has a lazy eye, consult an eye doctor as soon as possible.