Paediatric Ophthalmology: Breaking the myths around Squint

Tue Nov 24 2020
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Squint: Not just an eye problem; it’s a lot more than that! People with squint face prejudice and have been looked at differently everywhere they go. With the common misconception existing in society and ignorance, squint often remains untreated until marriage, or technical job arises. Children suffering from squint tend to have lower self-confidence and are more introvert, which affects their speaking and reading abilities. Squint, which is a misalignment of the visual axis, is a common problem among children. For years, people suffering from squint are left untreated as many feel that the problem may ward off on its own.

Let’s throw some light around myths usually associated with squint:

    1. Squint goes away on its own:

    Many people are under the impression that squint goes away on its own with time. Early diagnosis and treatment are essential to prevent the risk of developing a lazy eye (Amblyopia), a condition which occurs due to abnormal vision development and happens in one eye. The nerve pathways between the eye and the brain don’t work together, and the brain can’t recognize the sight from one eye. With time, the brain depends more on the other, stronger eye — while vision in the weaker eye worsens. There are chances to develop further complications, like vision loss, double vision, and mental stress due to low self-confidence.

    2. There is no treatment available:

    Treatment for squint is possible. The ophthalmologist needs to understand the underlying cause of the misaligned eyes. The probable causes of squint in adults are thyroid, diabetes, stroke, brain tumours, unbalanced muscles, and Myasthenia Gravis. Based on the patient’s condition, your eye doctor will provide the proper consultation and the treatment that will go with the specific eye problem. After doing a comprehensive study of the inner parts of the eye and a thorough eye checkup, your eye surgeon will advise appropriate surgical therapy. In some early squint cases, the ophthalmologists recommend practising eye muscle exercises, which may help align the eyes. These exercises involve practising coordinated movement and inward focusing of the eyes. With time and sufficient practice, these eye exercises can help you focus on nearby objects. Strabismus treatment needs to be early and aggressive and is considered a last resort by doctors.

    3. Squint is more of a cosmetic problem:

    It is foremost a functional problem of the eye. Squint surgery should not be considered just for cosmetic reasons; early detection can prevent vision loss and binocularity. A patient dealing with squint can see the world with only one eye at a time; therefore, the squinting eye can get severely compromised, permanently reducing the vision, leading to a lazy eye. Squint can often result from underlying severe eye diseases like a tumour in the eye, cataract, or infection. Immediate detection is crucial for further profound implications.

    4. Squints are congenital:

    Squints are not just restricted to children; it can happen at any stage of life- be it late childhood or early adulthood. Misalignment generally occurs due to loss of control on eye muscles. But depending on the severity of the problem, squint can be treated with surgical and non-surgical methods. The only difference with the surgery in adults, compared to children and infants, would be the functional outcomes that may differ slightly.

Why choose Centre for Sight?

With more than 25 years of experience, our team of eye experts ensures a comprehensive eye exam before chalking out a squint eye treatment plan, which suits the patient’s needs. Squint correction is a common treatment for squints and is a highly specialized surgery; therefore, our eye specialists perform it for kids. If your child is already dealing with a squint, get quality squint eye treatment at Centre for Sight.



Article: Paediatric Ophthalmology: Breaking the myths around Squint
Author: CFS Editorial Team   |   Nov 24 2020 | UPDATED 03:15 IST

*The views expressed here are solely those of the author in his private capacity and do not in any way represent the views of Centre for Sight.
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