Amblyopia, also referred to as lazy eye, is frequently seen in children. Amblyopia comes about when the brain switches off or suppresses sight in one eye. This might happen if someone can’t see properly through one eye due to nearsightedness, farsightedness or astigmatism, or something that might be obstructing vision in that eye. In most cases, eye patches are recommended in the treatment of a lazy eye. Our patients are instructed to wear their patch for a couple of hours each day, and in most cases, the patients are required eye glasses as well. So how does wearing a patch actually help? Basically, employing the use of a patch encourages your child’s brain to connect with the weaker eye, eventually improving how well it functions.
A lot of moms and dads have trouble fitting their children with eye patches, especially when they’re quite young. Their stronger eye is covered with the patch, which restricts their ability to see. It may be hard to explain the patch to your young child; that they need to patch their eye to help the sight in their weaker eye, but not being able to see well is just what makes patching so hard. There are a few ways to help your kids keep their patch on. Employing the use of a reward system with stickers can be successful for some kids. There are a variety of adhesive patches available in a cornucopia colors and patterns. Let your child be a part of the process and make it fun by giving them the opportunity to choose a different patch each day and then putting a sticker on the chart when the patch stays on. Older kids will be able to understand the patching process, so it’s productive to have a talk about it.
Flotation wings are also helpful in keeping young children from pulling their patches off.
Patches are a great solution to lazy eyes and can be really helpful, but it really requires you to stay committed to your long term goal.