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Treating Lazy Eyes in Children

Are you worried your child has a lazy eye? Amblyopia comes about when sight is suppressed, but only in one eye. Vision might be suppressed if someone isn't able to see as well with one of their eyes because of issues with distance vision, and in some cases, astigmatism, or something that's limiting vision in that eye. Usually, an eye patch is recommended in the treatment of a lazy eye. We generally advise our patients to apply their patch for several hours a day, and in most cases, the patients are required eye glasses as well. But how does patching actually work? Basically, employing the use of an eyepatch encourages your child's brain to connect with the weaker eye, and over time, strengthen it.

In some cases, it can be extremely difficult to have your son or daughter wear a patch, and even harder when they're quite young. When the good eye is patched, it infringes on their ability to see. It can be challenging to justify the process to your young child; that they must cover their eye to improve their weaker eye, but this can only be done when their strong eye is covered, thus restricting their vision. But don't worry; there are several tricks that make eyepatches a little funner for kids to wear. Using a reward chart with stickers given when the patch is worn can really work with some kids. There are a variety of ready-to-wear patches sold in different colors and patterns. Involve your child in the process and make it an activity by giving them the opportunity to choose their patch each day. Older kids will be able to understand the process, so it's productive to have a little session where you talk about it.

For very young children, there are flotation wings to stop them from pulling at their patches.

Patches are great and can be very successful, but it really requires your child's help and your ability to remain focused on the long-term goal of improving your child's vision.

Dear Patients,

Dr. Lewis Eye Care has made the difficult choice to temporarily close due to the COVID-19 virus pandemic based on the recommendation of the CDC. We cannot perform eye exams while maintaining social distancing, so continuing to see patients at this time could contribute to the spread of the virus.

Our initial plan had been to reopen Monday April 6th. However, as we get closer to that date it is becoming apparent that we may have to be closed for a longer, indefinite period of time.

If you are having an urgent eye health issue, there are some clinics in our area that are seeing patients for emergencies during shorter business hours. You should call ahead to those offices before going to their clinic, as their availability might change day by day. Those clinics could include Vancouver Eye Care at 360-823-2020, Peace Health Medical Group Eye Care at 360-514-7210, and Vancouver Clinic in Salmon Creek at 360-882-2778.

If you need a glasses or contact lens prescription emailed to you from our office, click on the Contact Form link, type in your name, email, and what you are requesting, and we will email you the information you need as soon as we can.

Thank you for your understanding, and please stay healthy during this difficult time.


Dr. Scott Lewis, OD