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Paediatrics & Squint

Vision plays a crucial role through out life. Nearly 80 percent of what we learn is through vision! A child's brain and eyes rapidly develop during the first 5 yrs of life. Uncorrected problems in the eyes during that time, even in one eye, can disrupt the normal development of vision permanently. Treatment has to be given right at that age! Children often will not know, understand or tell when they have vision problems! Parents and teachers should suspect visual problems in a child. The child certainly needs a detailed eye check up at around the age of 3 yrs. The earlier the eye problem is identified and treated, better are the treatment results.

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Common Eye Problems in Children

Refractive errors occur when an eye cannot clearly focus the image on the retina, resulting in blurred vision. This in many cases can subsequently lead to a permanent un-correctable disability.
Myopia or nearsightedness

Myopia or Nearsightedness is the most common refractive error among children. It occurs when the eye is longer for the focusing system to work properly. In myopia the distance objects appear blurred.

Hyperopia or Farsightedness

Hyperopia or Farsightedness occurs when the eye is shorter, needing the focusing system to overwork to bring the image focused on the retina. Hyperopic children have problems both for near and distance.


Astigmatism occurs when the power on cornea is not regular. Children with refractive errors can have frequent headache, blurred vision, eye strain and fatigue. These errors can be corrected with glasses. Contact lenses can be tried in early teens.

Strabismus or “Squint”

Strabismus or “Squint” is caused by the failure of the eye muscles to work together causing the eyes to be misaligned. In a child who has squint, one or both eyes may turn in, out, up or down. The brain corrects resulting double vision by using the better eye to see, and suppressing the squinting eye. This needs to be corrected at the earliest, as delay in treatment can cause permanent visual impairment. Treatment could be glasses, patching, home eye exercises or work ups on VTS4 system. In few children this needs to be followed up by a surgery to straighten the eyes. Surgery is ideally advised around the age of 4 yrs. and it may be on one or both eyes. It is a very safe extra ocular procedure performed under general Anesthesia and at dr. Sreekanth eye care & research centre it is always done under Operating Microscope.

Amblyopia or “lazy eye”

Amblyopia or “lazy eye” is a condition where the eye is structurally normal but vision is reduced, due to inadequate visual stimulus in childhood. Uncorrected squint, asymmetrical uncorrected refractive errors, cataract etc. can lead to amblyopia. With early detection, the lazy eye can be corrected.

Eye Injuries

Eye injuries in children can cause eye damage which can be prevented by:

  • Supervising children while using sharper objects.

  • Keeping your child away from hazardous objects, medicines, chemicals, cleaning agents and sprays.

  • Giving your child protective eye wear during sports, recreation and lab activities.