Mumsnetters aren't necessarily qualified to help if your child is unwell. If you have any serious medical concerns, we would urge you to consult your GP.

Lazy eye, squints, glasses etc.....

(913 Posts)
cheekyginger Thu 01-Sep-11 22:38:05

Im an orthoptist (binocular vision specialist) and a mummy.

I thought i would start this thread in case anyone was wanting any advice, re-assurance, opinions about any eye problems that you wee ones are having.

gabity Mon 12-Sep-11 13:05:15

Just saw your post now while searching for squints.

My DD (19 months) has just been referred to hospital for a squint in her left eye.

It appeared when she was about 6 months old (4 months corrected, she was perm), totally went a few months later and recently came back worse than ever.

Its there pretty much constantly, although notably worse when she is tired or concentrating.

Just wondered what the likely first step of treatment would be? She was referred 8 weeks ago and still heard nothing, my Mum wants to pay for her to be seen privately - worth it?

Can I ask about adults with a lazy eye? I had a lazy eye as a child and glasses from 2. Did patching etc but eye remains lazy, with the result that I have one short sighted eye and one lazy long sighted eye, and i get double vision if both are corrected. Eye hospital advised glasses to correct the short sight and nothing for the lazy eye, but that was 15 years ago and now my optician wants to start correcting the long sighted eye. I feel uneasy about that so wondered what you would advise

Seona1973 Mon 12-Sep-11 18:50:17

dd got glasses at 18 months after I noticed she was squinting in her left eye. She is long sighted and the sight in her left eye was poorer than in the right eye. She got glasses to help her see and had patching treatment to improve the sight in her right eye. The sight in both eyes is now pretty much equal but she will probably always need to wear glasses.

CMOTdibbler Tue 13-Sep-11 16:26:41

Therinmadness - if you have prisms, you won't have double vision with your longsighted eye corrected, and surely its better to be using it ?
I'm a squinting adult, but have both eyes shortsighted, and loads of prisms

cheekyginger Tue 13-Sep-11 20:37:27

Hi everyone,

Hi gabity:
Your LO will likely be assessed for glasses either at first or second visit. From what you describe your wee one might need glasses. When children are longsighted their eyes have to over accommodate to see near objects clearly, and in some cases this over accommodation causes a convergent (turns inwards) squint. If this is the case glasses may fully correct the squint or make it smaller, but this wont be known until your LO is wearing their glasses for a few weeks/months.
They will also try and get a rough estimate of her vision to assess whether the vision is getting a little bit lazy in her squinting eye. If they find that her vision is reduced over a few visits then she may require patching. A patch on the good eye that allows the lazy eye to work harder.
Hope this is kind of what you were expecting? Feel free to PM me if you want to ask anymore questions.

cheekyginger Tue 13-Sep-11 20:47:15

Hi madness,

From what you describe you should avoid getting the vision corrected in your lazy eye especially if you get double vision when it is corrected.
If you have never had binocular vision (straight eyes) correcting your vision in the lazy eye, in your specific case, will really confuse your brain!!! You cant develop binocular vision as an adult if you've never had it in childhood when your eyes are developing.
Prisms, that one of the other posters mentioned, wouldnt be suitable in your case as prisms are used to maintain binocular vision and by the sounds of it you dont have any, so for you, using one eye is the best solution.
Hope this answers your question.....

cheekyginger Sun 30-Oct-11 22:46:43


workshy Mon 31-Oct-11 01:04:35

hi madness -bit of thread butting but I'm an adult with a squint I have had all my life
I had 5 ops to cosmetically correct my squit but I've never had binocular vision -the last one was at 11 so 22 years ago and I was told that if my eye started to turn again then there was nothing more that could be done

4 years ago it had got significantly worse (I blame having kids lol) so mentioned it to my optician, she sent me to GP who then refered me to the hospital, and 4 months later I had a 6th op to correct my squint -so far so good!

I still don't see out of both eyes (I can see out of both eyes but my brain doesn't register both pictures so tend to flick from one eye to the other depending on where the thing is I'm looking at if that makes any sense) but cosmetically it has made a huge difference -might be worth askig for a referal back to the hospital if it has been a long time since you went and things change smile

NoodlesMam Wed 02-Nov-11 11:12:02

Hi Cheeky Ginger, I think your thread is brilliant and also very kind of you!

My DD2 3.5yrs has limbal stem cell failure (with associated epithelial defects, corneal vascularisation, cell migration etc.) corneal scarring to the centre of her right eye, her retina (both eyes) is underdeveloped (macula is flat not dipped) and she is also long sighted one eye and short sighted the other. Vision is 1.8 and 0.8 logmar. No success with the 3D tests and often struggles with depth perception.

We are managing to keep glasses on and medicating with steroids and dry eye treatment.

I've noticed recently that when we are late for school in a rush and DD is walking fast she asks to be carried and says she feels dizzy. I've noticed in general she's slowed down, doesn't try to run about so much anymore too. I'm trying not to worry and my initial thought is that perhaps her vision or the image she sees becomes more blurred if she's moving around fast and that's what she means by 'dizzy'? Would that be a reasonable assumption?

We have an appointment at the hospital on Monday anyway so will discuss it then but thought I would ask as it has been really bad over the last couple of days.

Thank you! smile

LittleWhiteWereWolf Wed 02-Nov-11 14:16:20

Ooh just what I need today! What are the chances?!

Have just picked up DD (2.4) from nursery and they mentioned they've noticed her left eye drifting inwards when concentrating on something close at hand, which is something my mum and I noticed as well on Saturday. Her uncle, DHs brother, had a lazy eye as a child requiring a patch (that was never worn) and now glasses (that he never wears). It seems to my untrained opinion that DD seems to have a lazy eye herself. What do you think?

I'm planning on taking her down town tomorrow as I'm off work and popping into Boots Opticians who do my eye tests and seeing what they think.
Just wondered if you or anyone had any advice or if there's something I'm missing.


MartyrStewart Wed 02-Nov-11 14:20:12

Hello Cheeky, how kind of you to start this thread.

DD is nearly 3, and since she was around a year we have been told that she will have to have surgery for her convergent? squint. She has just started wearing patches for a couple of hours a day but my question really is what should I expect from the surgery? Is there anything I can do to make it easier on DD?

DamselInDisarray Wed 02-Nov-11 14:28:56

My DS is 2.2 and has been blinking a lot, often during story time. It's not like fluttery blinking; he squeezes his eyes shut and then opens them again. We thought it might be hay fever in the summer and/or tiredness, but he's doing it more and more. Any ideas?

wentshopping Wed 02-Nov-11 14:42:47

Hi cheeky,
I was just wondering about getting dd3's eyes tested again. Typically how often should children get their eyes tested? We live in the US, and they are screened at school with a letter sent home if any concerns. One time all 3 kids had "concerning" eye tests at the drs (annual check up) so I took them to opthamologist, only for all to be pronounced perfect. Anyway, dd3 has cerebral palsy, no previous problems with sight, but school nurse has now sent home a letter requesting a "proper check-up", with the reason given as "other" (Out of a list of eye problems). I know I need to ask her what "other" means, but do you have any thoughts on eye test frequency?

FanjoForTheMammaries Wed 02-Nov-11 14:45:10

I would like to know...

DD is 5 and has prescription +1.5 in right eye and +6.5 in left..not good I know. Until recently she would not wear her glasses at all (she has autism) now wearing them for 2-3 hours a lazy eye YET..could this be enough to stave it off? (we have no hope of managing patching with her)...


Yanka Wed 02-Nov-11 20:05:33

Another question Cheeky Ginger - thanks for offering advice!
My DD (6) has been prescribed glasses 6 months ago - one eye +3.5, the other +1. We are trying our hardest to make sure she wears her glasses all the time - according to the Optician, she is over the age limit where they try patching - is there anything else we should/could be doing?

And another question - how early can I get DS (2) tested to make sure we pick this up earlier if necessary?

bump smile

FromGirders Mon 07-Nov-11 18:15:53

I don't have a question, but for the parents who are currently starting to deal with lazy eyes etc, I thought I'd post my experience.
Ds's lazy eye was spotted at a HV check at 39 months. To get a quick diagnosis, I took him to specsavers, where they literally diagnosed glasses which "he would have to wear for the rest of his life" and nothing else.
I asked to be referred to the orthoptists at our local hospital.
they did a much more thorough check, diagnosed glasses and patching. He had to wear his patch for about 18 months, and in that time went from only being able to distinguish shapes / letters nearly two inches tall, to now only having to have a +3 prescription on his glasses. (With his glasses on he has near perfect vision, without them he's still a bit longsighted but nowhere near as bad as he was.)
Wearing the patch was not onerous, but we did obey instructions as to timing rigidly.
We've been told that once he gets into his teens he'll not have to wear his glasses all the time (will be able to leave them off for nights out etc if he wants) and if he chooses to wear contacts in the future he'll just need one (which tickles me for some reason).
Just thought I'd post a positive outcome!

Avantia Mon 07-Nov-11 18:29:13

Another positive outcome here for lazy eye.

I am now in mids 40's . I have a lazy eye that was operated on when I was 18 months - had the patch during childhood , never needed glassed.

Went on to join police - passed medical no problem - during my career was advanced driver and firearms officer.

I now wear glasses for reading - nothing to do with lazy eye just old age .

cheekyginger Thu 10-Nov-11 14:57:45

Not been on for a while...oops!!! smile

Littlewhite I hate to say it but some convergent squints (turning in) dont appear until this age as thats when they really start to focus on things. The lens in your eye focuses from a very young age this is called accommodation, and when your eyes accommodate to look at things up close your eyes naturally converge. When children hit nursery they are suddenly doing alot more accommodating, and squints can become apparent. This means that your daughter might be longsighted and she should be assessed for glasses asap. Generally kids as young as your LO will be referred to your nearest eye clinic but this can be done by your optician.

martyrStewart squint surgery is either cosmetic, which will make the eye look straight OR functional to help some patients use the eyes together again. Your orthoptist/eye DR should be able to tell you which. If it is purely cosmetic it CAN get done at any age and its up to you.

damselindiss blinking can just be a phase that some kids go through. If you have a family history of squints or glasses it would be worth taking them to an optician.

wentshopping here in the UK (scotland) children get a eye test in their pre-school year at nursery (3.5 - 4.5) then there are no other official eye screenings. Its really up to you as a parent if you have concerns. Certainly would do no harm to get kids eyes checked when they are in primary 2/3 then before going into high school at approx age10/11.

Fanjo anytime she has them on will help towards preventing a lazy eye. It is quite a big difference between then eyes so the longer she can have them on the better. Do you see an orthoptist? Have they ever mentioned atropine as an alternative to patching??? You can pm me if you want more info....

Yanka I would get a second opinion tbh. We have attempted patching up to 10 yoa. If your child has a squint as well as the glasses this should be done with care. But if no squint, patching is always worth a go. Your visual pathway still has "plasticity" until the age of 9-11 ish!! DS 2, unless you have concerns wait till he's about 1 and ask to be referred to your local eye clinic.


schmee Thu 10-Nov-11 19:03:14

wow - thanks for setting up this thread. My son got his glasses today and says that everything is blurry. Does that sound right? He has mild longsightedness with a 1.25 prescription in one eye and 1.0 in the other. He is 5.

cheekyginger Thu 10-Nov-11 21:20:39

Glad this thread has been helpfull!!! grin

schmee This is a very common problem!! When a child is longsighted and not wearing glasses they have to constantly overfocus their eyes to see clearly. In some cases like your son when they first get their glasses their eyes don't realise they can relax and let the glasses see for them. It can a few hours/days/weeks to adapt everybody is different.

Its not a massive prescription so encourage him to wear them mostly for closework initially and gradually increase the time he has them on.

Good luck x

schmee Thu 10-Nov-11 21:21:45

Thank you!

daenerysstormborn Fri 11-Nov-11 00:18:41

cheekyginger, thank you for being so generous with your advice on this thread. dd is almost 10 and has worn glasses since she was 22 months old. her prescription is something along the lines of a +4.75 and a +5.25 (i can find the full details if you need them), she has a squint in the weaker left eye, astigmatism and double vision without her glasses, but she wears the glasses all the time.

my questions are, she's done 9 months of patching a few years ago which did help improve the left eye, would she benefit from any more? what is the long term prognosis for her vision?, her prescriptions seem to be gradually lessening in strength, how much improvement is realistic to expect?

cupofteainpeace Fri 11-Nov-11 14:12:48

Can I ask something please.....
Does binocular vision improve after the age of 8 ish?
DS is long sighted, and has astigmatisms. As he was discharged from eye hospital care, age 7, binoc vision was just beginning to work. Don't think optician checks for it.

cheekyginger Sat 12-Nov-11 22:04:55

deanery Our guidelines for stopping the patch are based on the child's vision. If the vision is static over 2 visits then the optimum level has been achieved. If your eye clinic stopped the patching after 9 months then they must have achieved the best level of vision and that's why it was stopped. Therefore there would be no benefit in doing any more patching.
Longterm, her vision should remain around the level that was achieved with the patching. Her prescription will fluctuate but it would be unlikely to reduce enough for her to manage without them. Contact lenses would be an option in the future if she wanted them. Whatever effect the glasses have on her eyes she can expect the same from contact lenses.

cupoftea Thats a tricky question! confused Most kids have their treatment to maximise their vision and their binocular vision(BV), and once this is achieved they are discharged to the care of a "high street" optician. So i would imagine your son has reached his potential for his BV. Most opticians do a 3D test of some kind which detects binocular vision. Hope that makes sense!

SolidGoldVampireBat Sat 12-Nov-11 22:11:32

Just another sharing of experience here: I first suspected DS was a bit squinty when he was a baby, though the HV said that most babies squint a bit and it would probably settle down. When he was 3 it was rather more noticeable so we went to the GP and asked for a referral; he had glasses and patching for a couple of years, then glasses for another year and this summer they said he had pretty much grown out of it and could be discharged. He does still roll one or the other or both eyes in when tired and concentrating, but not very much; they said it was 'cosmetic' now and he could have surgery for it, but i am disinclined to subject him to surgery for the sake of appearances.

cupofteainpeace Mon 14-Nov-11 21:46:01

Thanks. Will ask optician next time for 3D test. Amazing how eyes adapt and adjust. Have learnt a lot these last 7 years!!
And thank you to all eye specialist people. You are amazing!

sparklejawsy Tue 15-Nov-11 13:11:29

Hi, this is my first post on here and I happened to log on and see your post straight away, must be fate!

Anyway, yesterday my 5 yo DS had his school eye test and came home with a referral sheet which said he has Reduced Vision in his right eye (RV 1.6 (2/60) LV 0.1 (6/7.5)).
Underneath the problem is circled as severe rather than slight or moderate.

There is no other info, just says I will get an appt sent through the post for a specialised local clinic.

He's never shown any sign of struggling with his eye sight, catches balls, writes, draws and reads etc really well so this has come out of the blue for us.

I've tried to phone the clinic but the Orthopist isn't there today and I have to admit I'm panicing a bit about what this all means!

I would be really grateful if you could shed some light on this for me.

Thank you

detoxdiva Tue 15-Nov-11 13:40:22

Hi..this is a great thread - I certainly could have done with it a year ago!

For the parents seeking advice from cheekyginger, I thought I'd share another positive experience.

Dd was seen at the local hospital at 3 years old after we noticed a squint in one of her eyes. We were told she was extremely long sighted, with an astigmatism in 1 eye and virtually no 3d vision sad

She was prescribed glasses but at her first 3month check we started patching the 'better' eye as the vision was not improving as would have been expected. After a further 3 months of patching for 6 hours a day the improvement in her vision was astounding, and after another 3 months of patching for 3 hours a day her eyesight improved even more to be pretty much equal in each eye and she has 3d vision. She is now only being patched for 2 hours a day and we're hoping that this will be the last 3 months she has to be patched.

I'll admit I did have a 'secret' cry when we discovered the need for patching - I was so worried about her being picked on having just started school, and was really nervous about her not wanting to keep the patch on and having to face a daily battle with her grin. However she was fantastic at wearing it and I can honestly say that she has not encountered a single negative comment about wearing her patch. Of course children are curious and ask about it, but once she'd explained why she had it, they lost interest and it was never mentioned again!

Good luck to all the little ones going through the same smile

Great thread cheekyginger, what a fab idea! I first noticed my daughter squinting shortly before she turned two. she wore glasses from age 2 no problem. She had a squint and was long sighted. She had her last check up 6 months ago and they didn't mention the squint at all, but have given her +3.5 & +4.5 glasses this time. I can't even remember the last time I saw her squint. They said she has an astigmatism too. They never give me a straight answer & was wondering if you could advise me on a possible prognosis

cheekyginger Fri 18-Nov-11 17:29:40

sparklejawsy Normal vision in the UK is 6/6 which is the equivalent of 20/20 in the US. Your sons vision is reduced in his right eye by a significant amount. BUT DONT PANIC your LO is likely to have a lazy eye (which means the vision is lazy but this does not always mean a squint) this could have been caused for a need for glassed just in this eye (if the image going into the eye is blurry the vision doesnt develop properly).
It is likely that the vision has been reduced in this eye from a very young age and that's why you have not noticed anything about your sons day to day abilities as his left eye works normally. That's why the screening happens to pick these things up. I would imagine you would get seen quickly so that treatment can get started asap. The younger a child is the better for treatment. The orthoptist and eye dr will assess your son for glasses and find out what is the cause of the reduced vision. He will likely need patching treatment to improve the vision in his RE. But as detoxdiva describes this isnt as awful as people think. Kids are amazingly adaptable smile

kellibabylove Thats a bit of a tricky one confused, as it depends on her type of squint!! If her squint is fully corrected with the glasses then it will stay this way longterm. Contact lenses will also have the same effect when she is older. Generally if a child has a squint and has over +3 of longsightedness (think i made that word up but it works!) they will need there glasses all day and longterm. Think that almost answers your question!

sparklejawsy Sat 19-Nov-11 11:23:23

Thank you so much cheekyginger, and all the other posters who've experienced something similar.

The Orthopist called me back on Wednesday and has book us in to see her on this coming Wednesday so I will let you know how we get on.
It was really useful for you to explain what this possibly means.

I am feeling shocked/upset/worried about it as I just never noticed and therefore feel bad that my lovely boy has been struggling with his eye sight for so long and I didn't know. Because he is one of the oldest in his class (birthday in September) he is also older for his screening test. Really wish they did yearly screenings now so this could have been picked up earlier.

DS is a pretty adaptable child and I sometimes wear my glasses when not wearing contacts and he asks to put them on and likes looking at his reflection so I think he'll be OK about wearing glasses. Plus his best friend (of this week anyway!) wears glasses so he won't be alone.

Eglu Sat 19-Nov-11 11:40:55

Great thread. DS2 is 4.2 and in the summer he got glasses he is +2 in the right eye and +4 in the left. No squint yet as we caught it before that.

He has worn the glasses almost 3 mths now and has improved 2 lines on the chart with his left eye, so is starting to use it.

My question is will he always need to wear glasses?

Eglu Sat 19-Nov-11 13:16:22

Great thread. DS2 is 4.2 and in the summer he got glasses he is +2 in the right eye and +4 in the left. No squint yet as we caught it before that.

He has worn the glasses almost 3 mths now and has improved 2 lines on the chart with his left eye, so is starting to use it.

My question is will he always need to wear glasses?

Eglu Sat 19-Nov-11 13:17:22 double post. stupid phone

cheekyginger Mon 21-Nov-11 10:52:43

Sparklyjawsy Good luck at your appointment. Unfortunately its a bit of a postcode lottery for screening. Im in scotland and the vast majority of kids get pre-school screening and some of the kids are not 4 yet. This isnt the case throughout the uk and the screening is really patchy throughout england. (Not sure about wales and ireland).

EgluSince his right eye is +2 he technically will manage for short spells without his glasses. BUT this is only once he is a teenager and all his eye are full developed. He will always need them to comfortable for reading, but for sports or a night out he might mange without them. It will really be up to him if he wants to do spells without them. Most people (that are longsighted) find they get headaches if they go without there glasses for a few hours.

Glad people are liking this thread smile

Eglu Mon 21-Nov-11 20:21:16

Thanks cheeky. Great help.

Snuppeline Mon 21-Nov-11 20:51:30

Dear Cheeky, thank you so much for starting this thread. My dd was born with a unilateral cateract in her right eye which was discovered when she was 8 weeks old, she had surgery when she was 10 weeks old. Patching started at 11 weeks. She has been unfortunate in that the cateract keeps growing back and we have just had the fifth round of surgery last Tuesday. She's now 3 years old and we are doing a marathon two weeks of patching (24/7) to see if we can kick start her brain to make best use of her bad eye.

My dd received amazing care, for which we are eternally grateful, but I find that the staff are all (understandably) really busy and can't answer all random questions or explain everything. For instance, I'm finding it really difficult to understand what sort of sight my daughter has, when she uses just her bad eye and when she uses both eyes. Obviously not easy for you to just say but perhaps if I provide you with more information you can give it a go?

Again, thank you so much for starting this thread I will be watching it with great interest!

I bet you are wishing you never started this thread! grin

My DS is 13months and I noticed a slight turning in of his left eye months ago, left it for a while as figuured it might just be one of those things that disappears with age, no change so mentioned it to the HV who has referred him to the orthoptist in a couple of weeks. I was just wondering what to expect? How do they detect a vision problem with a baby so young? And is there anything they can do to treat it if a problem IS found?

Any advice on what to expect or if there is anything I should specifically be asking would be much appreciated.

Thanks for all your useful advice.

cheekyginger Tue 22-Nov-11 21:54:11

Snuppeline I cant tell you what she can see with her bad eye as i would need to know her level of vision as in 6/6 or 6/60. (The higher the bottom number the poorer the vision), but when she has both eyes open her good eye will allow her to see normally. She will be able to see everything any other child her age can see. Her 3D (depth perception) vision might be affected depending on the level of vision in her bad eye. The poorer it is the harder it is for the brain to put the images together and give 3D vision (hope that makes senseconfused). BUT bear in mind whatever vision she has that is what she is used to and she will adapt.

Tittybojangles Im quite enjoying getting to use my brains. And its really interesting to see my work from a mums perspective!!
As for your question......When did you first notice it? Is it happening more frequently? Is there any family history of squints/glasses/lazy eyes? How is your DS's general health? Was he a full term pregnancy? Thats some of the questions that you will likely be asked.
The orthoptist will get a rough estimate of your sons vision using specially designed vision tests for this age group. (You can google "cardiff acuity cards" for an example). You'll be surprised at what they will manage. They'll show him lots of wee pictures on sticks and carry out a "cover test", which tests for a squint. The tests will seem very basic but an orthoptist can tell quite a lot just from basic tests and observing a child. They will do some basic tests for 3D vision.
If they find that he has a tendency to squint, your son may need to be seen by an optometrist (optician) or a ophthalmologist (eye Dr) to have the actual glasses test carried out. But i'll stop here just incase he gets seen and he's fine!!! No point me rambling on for ages!!! grin

EttiKetti Tue 22-Nov-11 22:04:38

I've a houseful of eye problems grin
DS is 6 and had bilateral divergent squinting, noticed at 12 mth, specs constantly for 3 years then squinting surgery on one eye. Two more years in specs then they took them away, said he didn't need them.....only he did, he walked around for a year with one eye closed! Finally a few months sho he was offered a tiny prescription with a 25% tint and the difference was instant! smile

DD1 was told lazy eye at 8(now 18) but warned not fixable. Wore +8.5 glasses for right eye until age 14 when suddenly pronounced normal vision! Recently told lazy right eye again but nothing glasses can fix, so leaving her be. I don't really understand and she went to last eye test alone so....

DD2 is a recent glasses wearer, only +0.75 but she loves them, which aged 9, helps smile

Ineedacleaneriamalazyslattern Tue 22-Nov-11 22:19:42

What a fab idea this thread is.
Right my story grin my whole family wear glasses we have a strong family history of astigmatism the only people who don't are my dad and DS1.
DD has an astigmatism and was found to have a lazy eye at 2 and has had glasses since.

She is no longer seen by the hospital but way back when ds2 was just over a year old the hospital she was attending asked to get ds1 referred to check him out and catch any problems early. He was fine.

Now I have ds2 who is 17 months. I have noticed (not all the time but enough to have a pattern forming) in pictures since he was about 6 or 9 months old that he looks like he has a squint. My sister and my mum had squints. I spoke to the gp when I first started noticing it and he basically said nothing to worry about was a latent squint. Which may be true but he was not keen to be referring me to get ds2 checked at any point unless I actually noticed him having problems.

Fast forward a bit and I had dd at her regular optician appointment and he mentioned getting ds2 referred soon because of our strong family history and dd getting her glasses so young.

So getting to the point haha what is a latent squint and should I go back and be more forceful about getting ds2 referred? I think I should go back because dd was only 2 and by that point already had a lazy eye but felt fobbed off and neurotic by the gp.

cheekyginger Tue 22-Nov-11 22:52:50

Ineed You are in no way neurotic!!! I totaly agree with your optician. One of the main things we tell HV and GP's in our are that the family history is so important!!!!
Ask to see a different GP if you can....or can you book son in with your optician get a test with them and get them to refer? Opticians in scotland can directly refer, this may not be the case elsewhere??
A latent squint is really hard to explain confused!!! But here is the natural underlying drift of the eyes if you cover one up. So if this natural drift is quite large it can eventually break down a become a manifest squint, a visible squint. So definitely worth getting it checked out!

ZuluWorrier Tue 22-Nov-11 23:09:59

Fab thread cheekyginger, thank you!

I have another hopeful story to add if that helps? My DD had an intermittent squint at 6mths old-I mentioned to GP and we got
referred to Moorfields eye hospital there and then as my mum and sister both have/had amblyopia (is that the same as lazy eye?).

She was 9mths old when we went to the first appt. We saw a collection of amazing people (Orthoptist, optometrist and ophthalmologist) and after about 4hrs of tests she was diagnosed with severe longsight (+4.5 and +5) and an astigmatism. The tests were as cheeky said, but my dd was given eye drops to dilate her pupils. The Optometrist then shone a light into each eye to work out where the light 'hit' (before or after the retina) and then held various lenses up between DD's eye and the light to work out the degree to which she was longsighted.

DD had her glasses within a week and I had been really worried about her pulling them off, but its never been an issue. From the minute we put them on her, she beamed! smile She started focussing on us more when we were holding her (previously I guess too much work for her eyes to accommodate) and showed much more interest in stuff at close range.

DD is now 2.4 and so used to them. The prognosis is that she'll have to use glasses (or later, contacts) for the rest of her life, unless/ until a surgical technique is developed to sort out her condition. But we're not worried and i don't think she will be either. They're so much a part of her and who she is that we can't really imagine her NOT wearing them. Today for the first time she proudly talked about a character on TV "wearing glasses, just like me, Mummy!" which was great. grin

Hope that helps-all the best to everyone out there just starting out with glasses/patching. It is worth it, I think. My sister's was caught much later so despite some patching and glasses through her her teens she now has one v longsighted eye and one slightly short-sighted eye. She only uses one contact lens though (no point with the v bad eye apparently) so monthlies last twice as long wink

Ineedacleaneriamalazyslattern Tue 22-Nov-11 23:17:58

Thanks that was really helpful grin I am in Scotland it was the optician that originally referred dd. Our current optician did say that he was limited in what he could check as he is so young but if the go was still not forthcoming then to take him back to him and he would be able to tell me if there was anything.
I just felt the go was treating me like I wanted ds to have glasses like I was wishing it on him but really I just don't want him to end up with a lazy eye and all the fights over patching I had with dd if it can be at all avoided.
Thank you so much it's good to hear I should be checking and will go back to the go and be a bit more forceful.
Take it you're in Scotland too? Shame we can't see you grin

Ineedacleaneriamalazyslattern Tue 22-Nov-11 23:24:05

Sorry another post smile just to add dd had absolutely fab care as well. I also worried about her pulling them off but she was delighted when she got them I think she realised straight away how much more she could see with them. She is 8 now and her glasses are so much a part of her she loves choosing new ones and it helps I love my glasses too and we both enjoy choosing nice fashionable frames and she is treated so well at the optician we use now and treated like a grown up there.
We had great people at the hospital who acted quickly with both her and ds1 and the optician said because of catching it early she sees so well with her glasses now.

Seona1973 Wed 23-Nov-11 08:11:56

I referred dd through the hv so if the gp doesnt help try your hv instead (in Scotland too!)

BirdyBedtime Wed 23-Nov-11 09:29:05

Hi cheeky - thanks for this thread. My DD was diagnosed with seriously lazy eye in Feb (we are in Scotland too but in our area visual screening not done until P1 so 4.5 -5.5). By the time we saw the orthoptist she was just turned 6. We've been patching since June and she can now see the 4th line on a standard chart with her glasses (+6) - she could only see the 1st to begin with. She didn't improve at the last visit so is now patching 6 hours and another appointment in 2 weeks. My concern is that they are only checking her bad eye and don't seem to be looking at BV - if she remains the same with one (good) eye able to see the second bottom line and the other static at the 4th is there a chance that she will develop BV or will her brain only use the better image as there is such a big difference between the 2 eyes? Also in future how will an optician test her eyes when the best she is ever going to achieve is the 4th line - will her prescription just remain static or will it reduce with changes in the shape of her eye.

cheekyginger Thu 24-Nov-11 15:00:30

Good luck Ineedacleaner.....keep me posted.

Hi birdybedtime As long as she doesnt have a squint. There is a chance the eyes will work together to some degree. Once the patching is tailed off the brain may or may not develop some BV. Their is no way to exercise this it just happens naturally as the eyes are used together. The orthoptist will continue the patching until the vision stops improving.
Once you are attending the optician they test each eye separately to find the required strength of lens so that actual level of vision doesnt matter. Her prescription will vary as she grows, but this can fluctuate either way up or down.

Great to hear lots of successful stories, thanks everyone grin

sparklejawsy Thu 24-Nov-11 19:03:21

DS and I went along to his appt on Wednesday, the Orthopitist repeated his school test and I was surprised when she covered his right eye how poor his vision is :-( He had his eye drops and then after an hour or so we saw the Optician who explained the problem.

DS has slight astigmatism and is very very slightly longsighted in his left eye and slightly worse astigmatism and is significantly longsighted (+3.25) in his right eye. He has been prescribed a pair of glasses to wear full time and he will be reassesed in 4 months to see if they've helped.

The Optician gave a very positive outlook saying that alot of the children he sees come back after 4 months and the bad eye has caught up to normal vision. He explained however to just hope that the right eye has improved just a little and if there is not much progress we will try patching.
DS was quite excited about wearing glasses and has chosen a Ben 10 pair (£20 extra typical! but if it means he enjoys wearing them it's a price I'm willing to pay) and we should be able to collect them next week.

So I am feeling very positive now, DS seems happy enough about it and I know we have to work hard for him to wear the glasses all the time once the novelty wears off and I'm just hoping the glasses do the trick.

Thanks again to all the posters and obviously cheekyginger. It was a relief to have someone knowledgable to ask about this.

cheekyginger Thu 24-Nov-11 20:01:32

No probs at all sparkle. Glad to hear you got on ok. If he doesnt have a squint fingers crossed his vision will come up really well with just the glasses alone.

Good luck smile

MrsCF Fri 25-Nov-11 22:33:12

I've found the thread really interesting, thanks. I have a more practical question, my daughter had the squint surgery on Thursday and currently requires eye drops 4 times a day, have you or anyone else got any tips for giving eye drops, my daughter hates it and is currently fighting me every time.

Seona1973 Fri 25-Nov-11 22:36:30

we only had to do them twice a day and it was a nightmare (involved holding her down on more than one occasion). Glad we only had to do it for a short time as it was very stressful.

MrsCF Sat 26-Nov-11 08:36:13

Yep, we are holding her down at the moment lots of bribery, which isn't working, we've got to do them 4 times a day for two weeks then twice a day for two weeks. We are thinking of creating a sticker chart a bit like the ones for patches, so she gets a sticker each time to colour a picture. Any ideas gratefully received though.

Seona1973 Sat 26-Nov-11 10:01:00

I'm sure we only had to use them for about a week. Can you double check if it is necessary to do as many times as you have been told to? Is it one eye or 2 that was operated on (my dd had 1 eye done)

MrsCF Mon 28-Nov-11 19:47:25

Thanks, she had both eyes done, we are going back to see the surgeon on the 9th. The eye drops are going a bit better now, a mixture of a new ring each time she is good for them and various audiences, cousins, pre school etc.

cheekyginger Wed 30-Nov-11 21:42:15

Hi mrsCF thats is longer than our depts protocol for post-op drops...but all depts do vary. U r doing everything u can by the sounds of it. Star/sticker charts and bribery r really ur only options.
Good luck smile

MissArizona Sat 03-Dec-11 08:28:58

Hello... My 2 year old son has 'intermittent exotropia' with 20/20 vision.

Recenty when I turn on the lights he says that they 'sparkle' when to me it just looks like a light. Should I be concerned about this?

thanks Thanks so much for your help!

cheekyginger Sat 03-Dec-11 17:05:21

Hi MissArizona, I think its probably just one of those things a 2 year old will say rather than be related to his squint. Some kids with Intermitent exotropia do tend to close one eye in bright sunlight but they generally are not symptomatic.

Think he's just being a 2 year old!!! smile

Noodlemacdoodle Tue 06-Dec-11 15:08:42

Hi Cheeky,
I have a 3yo with a squint and now lazy eye. When patching she cannot see anything to start with and then can see a bit but now very short sighted. i think it's like her brain turning that part of the optic nerve on.

I cannot get the patches on for more than about 30 mins / day. it is just too hard, she hates it so much. I have tried everything and nothing works.

Is there nothing else I could do instead? Will this improve? My understanding is that it needs to be patched in order for surgery to go ahead to strengthen the visionl; is that correct?

It is horrible.

brensky Tue 06-Dec-11 22:59:47

My daughter almost 7 was initially diagnosed with a nystagmus at 5 mths which in recent years is rarely noticeable. Slight short sighted so started to wear glasses for this at about 2 1/2yrs. Aged 3-5 was patched for lazy eye. Her sight inthis eye improved - great news - no patches but then again started to detoriorate. Also has astigmatism. After a lot of tests - she was diagnosed with cone dystrophy last year. I was devastated initially - idea of blindness or close to that for my little girl was heart breaking. We have had regular tests since then and her 4 siblings were also examined. They show no sign of cone dystrophy or anything else even minor so now our consultant does not want to see her for 6 months to see how she gets on and he wil reexamine his diagnosis. The fact her 4 siblings were clear has thrown him. Have you any advice or suggestions. I am waiting to get a second opinion. Based in Ireland. Any advice really welcome

cheekyginger Thu 08-Dec-11 20:39:39

Hi noodlemacdoodle, (sorry for massive post!)

If a childs vision is very poor then they will object strongly to the patching. But unfortunately it is even more important that the patching is attempted to improve the vision.
Here are some suggestions;
You could create a patch box. Have a box of toys etc that she is only allowed when she has the patch on. Try and make it a positive time so that she will gradually start to patch for a little bit longer each day. How long have you been asked to patch for each day?
If there is some TV programmes she like let her sit on your knee and watch the TV. (TV is not bad for your eyes, it is bad for you brain if you watch too much rubbish like me wink).
Put a patch on her favourite teddy/doll when she has hers on. But dont give up, 30 mins is enough to make a difference, but the more you manage to do in one day the shorter period of time you'll have to do it for.

Warning: TMI The medical term for a lazy eye (reduced vision) is Amblyopia. Amblyopia can be caused most commonly by a squint or having a stronger prescription in one eye causing a blurry image. It is NOT a problem with the optic nerve or the eye itself. It IS a problem with the brain! The cells in the brain responsible for vision (visual cortex), are understimulated. By putting the patch on the good eye you are stimulating the "lazy" cells in the brain and getting the brain learn how to see with the poor eye.

As for surgery. Generally speaking surgery is purely cosmetic. However, the better the vision the straighter the eyes tend to stay after the surgery, even if they do not work together. Therefore most orthoptists would treat the vision first prior to any surgery. The vision can only be treated up to age 8 whereas a squint can be operated on at any age.

Phew hope some of that helps! hmm

cheekyginger Thu 08-Dec-11 20:50:22

Hi Brensky,

Sorry to hear about your daughters cone dystrophy. Has it been given any other name?

Im afraid i dont know a great deal about the genetics of eye conditions being a lowly orthoptist and not a Dr!! Do all your kids have the same dad? (sorry to ask personal a question blush)

This is the link for Visual Impairment Scotland which has got a lot of useful information on it. You might find some of it useful.


IQuiteLikeVodka Thu 08-Dec-11 21:09:42

Hi Cheekyginger hope you don't mind me asking but my son is 11 months old and since he was a few months old (if my memory is right) his right eye hasn't been following the left when he turns to look at something. (or it may be the other way around jeez sorry I can't picture it now he's not in front of me)He has an eye appointment at the hospital at the end of December. Does this mean he has a lazy eye?

cheekyginger Thu 08-Dec-11 21:53:54

Hi IQuiteLikeVodka

Hmmmmm thats a tricky one. Depends on what you are seeing confused

Does one eye look as though its turning in when he looks to one side? Do you ever see it when you DS is looking straight at you, especially when he's tired?

If not then it might not be a squint. It might be a muscle imbalance. There is a condition known as Duanes Retraction Syndrome (if you type it into google images you can see some pictures and see if it's similar to what you have been seeing) that is a congenital muscle imbalance. It results in one (sometimes both eyes) eye not being able to rotate outwards.

But dont worry if it is any of these things as you've noticed it nice and early smile.

Good luck with your appointment, give us an update once you've been seen.

Tgger Thu 08-Dec-11 22:16:58

Hi there!
Just found this thread which could be very useful! I just got a letter from school today saying DS (just 5) "was unable to complete the vision test", also says "failed" and that he will be referred to orthoptist.

Clearly at this point we have no way of knowing if there is a problem with his sight that needs addressing or whether he for some reason found the test at school tricky and failed due to this (eg saying the letters incorrectly- he doesn't/can't say the "l" sound for example).

My instinct is to take him as soon as possible for another eye test, but I wonder what the best course of action is. Is a test at a local Specsavers or equivalent good enough or is it best to wait for the school referral. Keen to get him tested sooner rather than later.


johnworf Thu 08-Dec-11 22:58:45

Hi cheekyginger Brilliant thread and you're so good setting it up smile

My 3 year old DD is under mcr eye hospital but hasn't been seen in over a year ( their appointment system isnt very good). Anyhoo, she was born at 24 weeks and had laser surgery at 38 weeks for grade 3/4 ROP. All good now but this is why she is still under the hospital.

Last time we went, I mentioned her right eye was turning inward. They had a look but said it seemed fine. Now nursery have mentioned it and my SiL. I'm getting a bit worried that it isn't being looked at. What do you advise I say when we go for her next appointment? What should I be looking for in a squint?

IQuiteLikeVodka Fri 09-Dec-11 08:25:58

Thank you smile
I think it is just that one eye doesnt travel as far as the other,anyway I will look that up on google,thanks again

IQuiteLikeVodka Fri 09-Dec-11 08:44:51

Looking at the info,it very much seems as if it in Duane's retraction syndrome as it is his left eye that doesn't move outwards,can't see it when he's looking straight at me,thanks again

cheekyginger Fri 09-Dec-11 20:27:25

Hi Tgger

We have "unable to complete vision the vision test on our forms" too. We would generally use that if the kiddie didnt co-operate with the test. Either shyness or just refusing to do it (the joy of working with kids)!! We use a matching letter test so the kids dont have to know their letters, and if they cant manage that we use a picture naming test.
Rather than going straight to an optician you could phone the orthoptic dept to ask what was found on the day??? Did you get a permision/information leaflet about the eye test? If yes, there should be a contact number on it.
There is nothing wrong with going to an optician (my DH is one!), but sometimes it can complicate things i.e. double referral or they might not find a problem but have used a different test.
So in other words i would say contact the orthoptic dept that carried out the test and find out a bit more info. Rest assured if it was anything urgent your son would be seen asap. Hope that helps smile

Hi Johnworf,
When you say that "they had a look", did you see an orthoptist or was it just the eye Dr? wink Do you have anyone in the family with a squint, lazy eye? As ROP doesnt in itself increase the likelihood of developing a squint.
For a squint at that age here are some things to look out for
# eye turning in when tired, and noticing it more and more
# eye turning in after focusing on small pictures toys etc
# your daughter closing one eye when looking at small pictures

Things to ask at your appointment
# Re-iterate that a number of people are noticing it and also let them know if you are seeing it more often
# If there is a family history of suint etc, make them aware of it
# If you havent already, you could ask very nicely if you can be seen by an orthoptist

If this isnt enough info feel free to ask for more, dont want to bore you with TMI grin

Hi IQuiteLikeVodka, if it is DRS dont be worried. Some of the photos that you will have seen make it look quite bad. But in general people with DRS will not actually force their eyes in to that position, so it will go un-noticed unless they show it off as a party trick when older!!!
When you go to your appointment you could tell them what you think it is, that'll make them fall off their seat!! wink

Glad this thread is appreciated smile

Tgger Fri 09-Dec-11 21:11:57

Thanks! Very helpful. Yes, I've phoned the number on the letter now, left a message, so hopefully they'll get back to me quite soon.

I have booked an eye test at optician's now, but it's not until a week on friday, so hopefully I'll have got through to school health by then and can cancel if I want to. DS is normally pretty cooperative with adults these days but there could be all sorts of things that might throw him so I hope I'll get an idea if this was the problem from a phone call.

Would you still refer kids who don't cooperate to the orthoptist? I guess this could be their policy. We didn't get that much info on the actual tests (or at least I don't remember that!), just a general info thing- it's the screening test they do in Reception for kids, height/weight/hearing/vision. The number was the school health team, but I'm hoping they have my son's test details so they can enlighten me a little!

johnworf Fri 09-Dec-11 21:17:20

Hi. She sees this consultant

It does turn in when she is tired but when I raised it last time, I was told that in young children, they can appear to have a squint when in actual fact, it's something to do with their nose being flat or that the bridge of the nose isn't prominent. I'm sure that's what they said. confused

Out of my 4 siblings, 3 have had a squint. None of my other 3 children have had one though.

JKSLtd Fri 09-Dec-11 21:24:52

Hi cheekyginger - it's early days for us but wanted to ask anyway.

DD is 7months old and we have a referral to an orthoptist in January. She appears to have a lazy eye but not sure. Sometimes the pupils aren't in the same place in each eye if that makes sense? Also one eye seems to be a bit smaller than the other one.

She was born face first (ouch) and slightly skwiff so maybe it comes from that?

What can we expect from out first appointment?
What are the possibilities for what happens next?
Also, what is an orthoptist?!

johnworf Fri 09-Dec-11 21:31:48

Btw, am I incorrect thinking that I can't take DD to an optometrist as we're under the eye hospital?

cheekyginger Fri 09-Dec-11 21:33:37

Hi johnworf, not to disagree with a consultant....but....pseudosquint which is what he/she (not looked at your link) is describing is noticed in babies not a 3 year old!!!! shock Look for pseudosquint on google that what you are seeing?
You have what i would call a strong family history so i would strongly recommend that you mention it is getting worse (a wee white lie if you have to) and ask to be seen by an orthoptist. The consultant may be so focused on the ROP that might not consider other coincidental problems may exist. angry

cheekyginger Fri 09-Dec-11 21:35:48

johnworf you are free to take your child anywhere you choose. However the orthoptists that are based in the hospitals are the experts in squints lazy eyes etc. If you next appointment is not for a while that might be a good idea. If the optician find a squint then they will likely refer you anyway....

Dysgu Fri 09-Dec-11 21:44:18

Thank you cheekyginger for starting this thread.

I too have a house full of eye issues - in fact, apart from DP we are all fully signed-up members of the Girly Glasses Gang!

DD1 has been under the care of the eye clinic at the hospital since birth. She was born at 32 weeks and had lots of eye tests prior to leaving NICU - I hated the clamps they used to hold open her eyes but she never seemed bothered about anything other than having to be held still.
Anyway, now at the age of 5 she has a prescription of +6.5 and +7.5; she has a convergent squint in her left eye which is also lazy. We have been patching since she got her first glasses at the age of 20 months. We are still patching although are now down to 2 hours a day. She does this at school - she started Reception this year - and, after some initial problems with not wanting to wear her patch in school, she is now mostly okay with it. There have been several appointments at the hospital (she goes back every 8-10 weeks) where they have hinted that we are getting close to not having to patch any more - we get excited... only for them to say keep it up and we will see how it goes.
Will we ever say good bye to her patches? (We have great patches made by Framehuggers which provide total oclusion of the good right eye.)
With her glasses on she has normal vision - she can read the letters on the 2nd row from the bottom. With her left eye she can now read the row 4th from the bottom - originally she could only see the letters/shapes on the 2nd row from the top!
She has no depth perception - we just had to get the hospital to write a letter to her school as they wanted her to remove her glasses for PE for health and safety reasons - hospital said she would really struggle without them (she puts them on first thing on waking and has been known to fall asleep at night in them!)
The hospital has never really mentioned about surgery - only to say that it could be an option in the future but they are concerned that it might affect her vision negatively. Her squint is almost wholly corrected with her glasses.
However, I do wonder what she can actually see without her glasses - we take her swimming but have struggled to get prescription goggles strong enough.

DD2, on the other hand, has prescription of +4.5 in both eyes. We have always figured this is not too bad - but it seems that is only in comparison to D1. Is +4.5 'bad'?
DD2 also has a squint but only goes to the hospital clinic every 4-5 months - does this mean she does not have a lazy eye? We have never done any patching with her.
We have never bothered with prescription goggles for DD2 - should we?

Sorry for long post - hospital people (opthalmologists, optometrists, opticians) are all great but I never seem to get the answers.

I am short-sighted and manage fine with my glasses!

johnworf Fri 09-Dec-11 21:45:39

Thanks cheekyginger. No idea when we'll next get seen so I think I will take her to the optician where I go smile

You're fab grin

cheekyginger Fri 09-Dec-11 21:47:51

Hi JKSLtd,

An Orthoptist, is a specialist in binocular vision. We train at university for 3 years, many of our classes overlapping with opticians. They specialise in the optice if the eye and we specialise in the muscle function/movement of the eyes.

We are often described as physiotherapists of the eyes?! We deal with children with squints, lazy eyes, and also adults with double vision caused by nerve palsies, thyroid eye disease and many other things.

Your first appointment will be quite straight forward. If it is just the orthoptist you are seeing a lot of the assessment is observation while getting your daughter to look and follow small pics. At 7 months it may be what we call a pseudosquint (mentioned in my prvious post to johnworf). If that's the case it will reduce over time as her nose develops as it is not a true squint.
If they feel that she is squinting then that will be different.

At 7 months they might simply want to observe her in a few months time. As the eyes are still developing and the occasional squint can be seen. It's difficult to say what will happen next until you've had your 1st visit. I'll still be doing this thread then as i will still be on Maty leave, so feel free to post again!!! smile

cheekyginger Fri 09-Dec-11 21:49:21

let me know how you get on see if my verbal dr bashing was warranted!!!! grin

johnworf Fri 09-Dec-11 21:56:21

Will do wink

smileitssunny Fri 09-Dec-11 23:23:09

Hey cheekyginger found you! Marking my place ... Our next appointment is in feb. With orthoptist.

JKSLtd Sat 10-Dec-11 07:37:58

Thanks Cheekyginger, I'll be back smile

cheekyginger Sat 10-Dec-11 09:59:50

Hi Dysgu

Lots of things to answer!!!

Well for DD1: In our department patching is continued until the vision remains stable over 2 consecutive visits. If her vision remains the same at your next visit. Ask them if her vision was similar to her last visit, if it is then it is time to stop. This is evidence based practice i'm surprised she was been patching such a long time. It's not wrong by any means but seems a bit wishy washy.
As for squint surgery. If her squint is almost gone with her glasses on then surgery would not be an option as the squint that you see with her glasses on is what the surgeon would be aiming to correct, and if that's really small then surgery would risk overcorrecting it causing the eye to turn out the other way.....does that make sense?
As for swimming goggles, you could try
If you cant choose the strength of each eye seperately then +6.5 OR a +7.00 for both eyes would be fine.

As for DD2. We would class +4.50 as a moderate prescription. She will need her glasses long term. She will be able to see without them for short spells, for swimming etc. So goggles are not essential. If she has never had patching then that would suggest she does not have amblyopia (lazy eye).

Your girls are both longsighted and contact lenses would be an option when they are in their teens.


Tgger Mon 12-Dec-11 14:23:44

Hello again,
Thought I'd do a follow up. Found out that DS could read the letters down to the line above the bottom line with his left eye, but "a few lines above that" for the right eye, hence the referral.

I now have a letter with a number to make an appointment with a local clinic and am going to follow up that rather than go to the local optician. We shall see what the next test brings! They have dealt with it promptly as you say.

Thanks for your help.

johnworf Mon 12-Dec-11 16:27:44

Our health visitor has referred her to the orthoptist. No idea how long we'll have to wait for an appointment but will let you know how we get on smile

cheekyginger Mon 12-Dec-11 21:38:26

Hi Tgger, thanks for updating it's nice for me to hear how you got on. Hope it turns out to be fine. He might just have gotten a bit bored by the 2nd eye!!

Johnworf, well done the health visitor!!! That will give you some peace of mind.


klover Tue 13-Dec-11 15:40:26


Can someone offer some advice.
My dd is 5years old and has a very odd problem with one of her eyes. She raises her eyebrows and widens one particular eye, blinks lots and sometimes holds this one eye closed. When I ask her about it she says her eye feels strange, like its aching. Its all a bit confusing! She has no squint or lazy eye, but this is a constant problem which usually gets worse towards the end of the day. She has had an eye test and they confirmed her vision is fine. But I am concerned.

Thank you.

tooloudhere Tue 13-Dec-11 20:44:48

Hello, Just a quick(ish) question. How would you class an astigmatism of 2.5 with a prescription of -1.00.

Is that bad vision? A bit confused here. x

cheekyginger Tue 13-Dec-11 21:28:54

Hi klover, to be honest i don't really have any ideas. It could simply be a habit she has gotten into OR could be a visual problem, very difficult to tell without seeing her do it. Perhaps you could get a 2nd opinion? Where did she have her eyes tested? If it was an optician you could try a different one perhaps.
Unless another parent has experienced a similar problem thats all i can offer...confused

Hi tooloudhere, astigmatism is to do with the curvature if the eye. We generally explain it as "the eye is more like a rugby ball than a football". 2.5 is a moderate amount of astigmatism. Without the glasses the vision will be fairly blurry. No reason why someone with this prescription wouldn't have 20/20 vision with their glasses on.... Does that help? smile

tooloudhere Tue 13-Dec-11 21:38:08

yes it does, what if you add in nystagmus would that make actual vision worse or does it affect focus. All this in a very young child (just one) would you expect the astigmatism to get better with age or would you prescribe glasses now? thanks x

cheekyginger Tue 13-Dec-11 21:51:52

Hi tooloudhere,

Nystagmus is a tricky one as the overall visual potential wont really be clear until your LO is about 3ish when the vision can be assessed more accurately.

As for the prescription. At 1 the eye is still changing a lot. In our department we would probably hold off prescribing glasses for that amount of astigmatism just now and repeat the glasses check again in approx 3-6 months.

Karoleann Tue 13-Dec-11 21:58:44

Hi klover your daughter may have a small recurrent erosion on her cornea, or dry eye, I'd go back and see then Optometrist and mention it. They can put some special dye in the eyes and look for it.

tooloudhere Tue 13-Dec-11 21:59:05

Many thanks, we have glasses but I am not sure that we are doing the right thing. It just seems so young.

cheekyginger Tue 13-Dec-11 22:03:31

tooloudhere, is your LO wearing the glasses? If he/she has taken to them well, then go with the flow. Wearing the glasses wont make him/her more dependant on them. Are you getting assessed regularly?

tooloudhere Tue 13-Dec-11 22:08:36

it is a bit early to say whether they are liked or not, we get seen by one person or another every 6-8 weeks for things eye related.

cheekyginger Tue 13-Dec-11 22:16:14

tooloudhere, you seem a bit disheartened about the whole thing..... try not to worry too much as they will have his/her best interests at heart. Good luck with your appointments.
If your still not happy in a few months time you have a right to get a 2nd opinion.

Multigrain Tue 13-Dec-11 22:28:35

Hi Cheekyginger thank you for running this thread.

My ds is a +6.75 in both eyes.

He got a pair of glasses from specsavers in August that are not fit for purpose, the lenses keep on falling out, they don't stay on his face and they are downright useless. I'm taking them back in on a weekly basis. I have requested a new pair.

And have been told on top of the £125 we have already paid for these glasses to have the lenses thined etc, it will cost £250 for a new pair of glasses, or wait until next August.

Do you have any ideas, of how to get either Specsavers to give a new pair, or what we can do via the NHS?

Also in addition to this 2 specialists have recommended that he has a blue tint on his glasses for reading only, therefore we want/need to get him a reading pair of glasses, again is this possible on the NHS, and would we still need to pay £50 for the tinting?

We are finding glasses are costing us a fortune, he has a £30 pair of swimming goggles, £75 pair of sports goggles, and £150 pair of sunglasses.


cheekyginger Tue 13-Dec-11 22:43:27

Hi Multigrain,

Are you in Scotland?

If you have been attending a hospital specialist then i would have thought they would provide you with the voucher/prescription to take to the optician?
This should cover the cost of a basic pair of frames/lenses. You would then have to pay extra for thinning and tint. Thinning and tinting are not covered by the NHS.
In Scotland children under 16 glasses are free(Not sure about the rest of the UK TBH), unless opting for designer/sponge bob/spiderman glasses You would then pay a supplement.
Opticians in Scotland have the option of processing a "blue voucher". This is a replacement voucher for glasses that get lost or broken beyond repair. You would still need to pay for thinning/tint on top. You could take you DS's prescription to another opticians and ask for a quote to see if you can find it cheaper.

WhatWouldLeoDo Tue 13-Dec-11 22:56:11

What a great thread! CheekyGinger, when my DS was born we thought he had a slight squint, but were told repeatedly that this is common in babies. He's now 3.6 and I don't think it's any better. My optician has said to bring him in, but I wondered if you had any advice about questions to ask or information about what kind of options would be available if he does have a squint? Is it likely to be something he could still grow out of? TIA.

cheekyginger Wed 14-Dec-11 21:23:25

Hi WhatWouldLeoDo,

TMI warning grin

Up to 6 months the eyes are really not very well co-ordinated at all. So many parents notice squints at this stage and are rightly told by HV/GP that this will settle. By 6 months the eyes are working together much better and any squints that still persist should be referred on to a specialist.
Many babies have the appearance of a squint when they are very little due to a flat/wide bridge of the nose or slight facial asymmetry. This is known as a pseudosquint. As it is not a true squint, it should get less as the child gets older.
True squints if left untreated would tend to get worse over time and become more noticeable. And children don't grow out of true squints.

If you think you are still noticing a squint it would definitely be worth going to your optician to have him checked. If there is nothing then your son has had the benefit of an eye test, and if the optician does find something then he/she can refer on to your nearest eye clinic for any treatment/follow-up. These things are best caught early. smile

WhatWouldLeoDo Wed 14-Dec-11 21:41:02

That's really helpful cheekyginger, thanks. I think his nose is still quite wide in that babyish kind of way, but I'll take him to the opticians to be on the safe side.

tooloudhere Thu 15-Dec-11 19:50:19

Thanks, LO has many other problems too but you are right everyone is trying to help. We knew there were eye problems but did not expect glasses so early. The glasses haven't been taken off once today so I am assuming that is a good thing and means they are helping!

cheekyginger Thu 15-Dec-11 21:57:30

Thats a very good sign tooloudhere. Well done you and your LO.

BirdyBedtime Fri 16-Dec-11 13:59:07

Hi again cheekyginger. DD (6.6, lazy right eye, patching since June) had an appointment today and for the second in a row (end July-Oct patching 4 hours Oct -now 6 hours) she hadn't improved at all. The orthoptist has recommended another 2 months as their practice now is to do a third block where no improvement just to be sure no more vision can be gained. DD is quite disheartened as we'd been told at last visit that if no improvement this time we'd stop and she was prepared for this. It was a different orthoptist today and we are keen to do as much as we can, but if she has not improved since end July (over 4 months) I can't see how an improvement could be expected in the next 2 months on the same level of patching. What are your thoughts? They also want her to see the opthalmologist next time to ensure there is nothing they've missed but I can't think what that could be?

cheekyginger Sun 18-Dec-11 22:18:35

Hi BirdyBedtime,

Has your LO had been patching since June this year? If yes then that's not actually that long. Go with the flow just now as there may still be potential to have some further improvement. But i think i said before that if the vision is stable over 3 visits then this is our dept's cut off. It's the brain telling us that their is no further improvement to be had.
It's a shame to be getting told different things by different people though.
They will be bringing her back to see the Ophthalmologist to ensure that they arent missing mild optic nerve hypoplasia (ONH). Some children are born with a mildly underdeveloped optic nerve and patching has no effect on the vision. They will be making sure that this isn't the case.
Keep going this time. You will hopefully stop the patching next visit and if not ask why not?!

EustaciaVye Wed 21-Dec-11 14:50:51

Hi there,

My daughter is 5, and 18 months ago she was diagnosed as follows:

Her prescription was
sph +2.5
cyl -
axis - blank

sph +2.00
cyl +1.00
axis 90 degrees

A bit longsighted with an astigmatism in her squint eye. She was given glasses to correct the squint. After about 6 months it was obvious the squint was worsening so they started to patch. We did that for 4 months and the weak improved very slightly but her 'good' eye started to squint so they stopped.

She now has new glasses (same weak eye and slightly stronger for good eye). When she doesnt wear her glasses the eye movemy is so obvious sad The orthoptist as said they wont commit to future treatment yet as she is still growing etc but as it is fine with the glasses an Op would be considered cosmetic.

Any advice?

mazza227 Wed 21-Dec-11 22:21:23

Hi, I would just like to share my daughter's experience too, age 5

Back in July, I took her to opticians for eye test, no concerns just thought I would get her checked. We discovered then that she had a lazy left eye, I felt so awful when she couldn't read the letters, I thought she was messing around to start with :-( I was told that she was a 3.5 and 5.75 and needed glasses straight away, and was referred to hospital to discuss further options.

When I got home I was so upset that I had no idea, but nor had her nursery teachers or anybody else around us. Children obviously don't realise what is 'normal' and so don't say anything. I kept having so many sleepless nights about how terrible a mother I months on I realise there are so many children with the same condition, but you don't realise that at the time, you think it's just you!

Anyway she went to the hospital and was started with patching straight away, 6hrs a day. The first day she just kept crying saying she couldn't see. Luckily for us all, she was at nursery that day, which took her mind off it, and when she got there she was fine, she obviously struggled to start with, but coped really well.....again it was me who cried as I got to nursery to drop her off, and the children were asking why she had a patch, but they weren't being nasty, just interested. I discovered who do patches that fit over the glasses (rather than sticky ones which made her sore after just 2 days) so she now proudly wears her Tinkerbell one, and is the envy of her classmates!!

She had her next hospital appointment 2 months later, where she had improved by 2 lines, which I was really pleased with (but the orthopist had noticed she kept trying to peek looking over her patch!) So got her glasses adjusted slightly and she stopped that.

Then this week she had another appointment (3 months later) where she improved another 1.5 lines. So they are really pleased with her progress, she has another 3 lines to go now to be equal to her good eye.

So if anyone is worried like I was, please try not to, patching really seems to be helping, and there is certainly no need to worry about bullying smile

I do have a couple of questions though if you can help please?

Is it likely that she will acheive the 3 line difference?
Will her eyesight get worse again once patching stops?
Should I ask about vision therapy, would this help even further?
Is her sight in her 'good eye' being made worse by patching?
Do you think 6 hrs a day is too much? I read that 2hrs is now as good as 6+ ?

cheekyginger Thu 22-Dec-11 21:02:00

Hi EustaciaVye,

Your DD sounds like she has a fully accommodative OR partially accommodative squint. Meaning fully or partially straight with the glasses. If thats the case then unfortunately surgery may not be an option as the surgeons would aim the correct the visible squint you see when the glasses are on, and if this is really small then there would be a risk of overcorrection (the eye turning outwards after surgery). But don't be disheartened contact lenses will have the same effect that glasses do when she is older. smile

Hi Mazza227, nice to hear your daughters patching is going well.
As for your questions.
If the amblyopia (lazy eye) was caused purely by the stronger prescription in that eye, and no squint, then there is no reason she cant achieve equal vision. Once patching stops she should maintain this level of vision.
Patching is the gold standard form of treatment for amblyopia (lazy eye). No other vision therapy is needed.
If your daughter is coping ok with 6 hours keep with it. If you were doing less per day the overall length of treatment would be longer, for example patch for 6hours per day for 6months OR 3 hours per day for 12months. So technically people could agrue it is just as effective, but it is over a much longer period of time. As long as you are not patching way over 6hrs per day then there is no risk to the good eye.


EustaciaVye Thu 22-Dec-11 21:29:15

Thanks cheekyginger - they did talk about overcorrection being a risk of surgery so it sounds like you may be right. sad

mazza227 Fri 23-Dec-11 12:27:36

Thank you cheekyginger, that is really good to know that she could get equal vision. She has no squint so fingers crossed she will get there smile

Wanksock Wed 28-Dec-11 22:16:25

Really glad to have found this thread. I feel so confused with it, and I seem to get differing responses from the eye clinic at the hospital. DS has had glasses since he was 20 mo. He squints when tired or looking at things close up (first noticed this while he was eating which prompted me to get him tested).

My questions are -

He has a +3.5 prescription in both eyes. This is what was originally given to him at specsavers, as we went there before they referred to orthoptist. At the hospital, they do not seem sure what prescription he should have confused and always decide to leave him in the same glasses. Last visit he had improved by 4 lines (iirc) on the chart, but still they said keep the same glasses. Why is this?

Despite having the specs for 14 months, DS is STILL removing them, many times a day. They are mainly discarded if he is chilling out watching tv. But also he chucks them off sometimes if he is running around etc. What does he see like with them off? I can't understand why he would take them off if he can't see well without them. i think my main question is - because he is longsighted I understand that he sees close up better with the glasses on, does he see things far away worse when he has them on and is that why he takes them off?

Lastly, should I be forcing him to wear them when he has taken them off? At present, I just leave him without them for a while then pop them back on when I get a chance!!


mazza227 Fri 30-Dec-11 17:44:39

Sorry I have one more question I forgot before.
I am now hoping for the 3 lines difference to reduce or hopefully become equal, and have been told her prescription will change as she gets older anyway. But are her eyes likely to become more equal regarding her prescription. She was 5.75 and 3.5 but her glasses are 5.25 + 3 as she has no squint, this was in July and has not had prescription checked again since then. Is it possible that her bad eye will reduce from this to become nearer to the 3 in her good eye? Or would it automatically have reduced already with the help of the patching?

TheGoddessBlossom Fri 30-Dec-11 17:54:18

Have not read whole thread so sorry if you have already answered this question Ginger:

My DS woke up with his eye practically against his nose one morning when he was 18 months old. He was diagnosed with a lazy eye and he had patching and then an operation to correct it - but because he also needs glasses they only corrected his vision enough to be straight once he has his specs on. Will it be possible for him to have straight looking eyes ever without having his glasses on at the the same time?

brilaunt Mon 02-Jan-12 20:11:22

Hi Ginger... I'm not sure whether or not you will get my post but I will give it a try as I'm worried about my LO. My baby is 6months and I have recently been noticing that when she is tired her eyes tend to vere outswards for a split second when she is adjusting on an object that is above her. I.e when i wave something interesting above her head her eyes dont move fluidly before focusing on the object she can tend to look a bit drunk so to speak!? I can't decide whether or not her right eye is slightly worse than the left. l'm fretting terribly and I have made an apt with my GP to discuss it as I'm worried that it may be a symptom of something more sinister. My sister's little boy has a severe turn in left eye and my grandfather also had a squint. I would just like to know if you could give me any advice and some pointers on what to ask the dr? Thanks

cheekyginger Sun 08-Jan-12 20:03:51

Happy new year everyone!!

Hi Wanksock (great screen name by the way!),

Your sons glasses will be the required strength that gives a clear image to the back of the eye. Once a child is wearing the glasses the cells in the brain then adapt to this nice clear image and therefore the vision improves. The vision can take a little while to reach its maximum level, but this does not mean the strength of prescription has means the cells in the brain are working well and the glasses are doing their job. (Hope that makes sense!)

When kids are longsighted they can see surprisingly well without them BUT they have to over focus their eyes to do this and this can lead to sore eyes sore heads or squints becoming worse. Therefore for any child that is longsighted glasses are an absolute must for close work (reading writing etc), and if they have a squint they should be worn full time otherwise there is a risk of the squint becoming worse.

Try to avoid getting into a battle about the glasses. Let him take them off now and again when chilling out at home. But make sure he has them on at school/nursery and when looking at books etc.

Good luck smile

cheekyginger Sun 08-Jan-12 20:10:45

Hi Mazza227,
The patching will help the eye see better but will not change the actual optical power of the eye.
The difference between her prescription may vary as she grows but it is unlikely that they would ever become completely equal. Sorry....

sitsyou Sun 08-Jan-12 20:24:27

just came across this - don't need any advice (DD had suspected squint when v young and due a check up soon but I think she's fine) but just wanted to say THANK YOU, what a nice thing to do! wine

cheekyginger Sun 08-Jan-12 22:32:37

Hi TheGoddessBlossom,
Unfortunately the answer is no. He still squints when he takes his glasses off because of the longsightedness?!?!? I shall try and explain confused. When your son accomodates to see without his glasses on, this "extra" focusing causes the eye to turn inwards. There is no way to switch off this relationship between accommodation and convergence.
Contact lenses will do exactly the same job as the glasses when he is older.

Hi brilaunt,
Dont panic....its unlikely to be anything sinister, the eyes are still becoming co-ordinated over the first 6-7 months.
Some squints do start off that way....but again these are not sinister. There is a type of squint called an intermittent divergent squint, which means that one eye has a tendency to drift outwards at times. This can sometimes be worse when looking upwards. Your GP might refer you to an eye specialist (orthoptist or ophthalmologist) and your GP should be the one asking you all the questions! They might even tell you to come back in a few months if you are still noticing it.

Hi sitsyou, thanks for the appreciation!!! brew

psketti Mon 09-Jan-12 23:30:24

Hello cheekyginger I was wondering if you could shed light on my dd's sight problems. She started having a squint around age 2. We were told she was long sighted with rugby ball shaped eyes. They started her on +5 lenses in both eyes but over the past few years they have gradually increased the prescription (now a +7 in both eyes). When I ask if her sights getting worse, they say no. But surely it must be if they keep increasing the prescription. I'm worried about the future for her as I know this is a v strong prescription. Also I find different staff tell me different things so I'm never really clear. Is it the shape of her eyes that causes the long sightedness? And is this astigmatism? Any advice much appreciated.

cheekyginger Thu 12-Jan-12 14:38:59

Hi psketti,
Even though the prescription has increased that does not mean that her vision is getting worse (i.e her vision is always 20/20), it just means the eye is changing shape as she grows resulting in a change in prescription. When you were told she has "rugby ball shaped eyes", this means she has astigmatism along with the longsightedness, which is common. Its not the whole eye that's a rugby ball shape just the front part known as the cornea, but its easier just to say "the eye".
It is a combination of the length/shape of the eye and the power of the lens in the eye that determines what prescription a person is.
+7 is strong but there are lots of people out their with that prescription. The lenses these days can be thinned down alot so glasses are not too thick, and contact lenses will be an option for her when she is older.

Hope that helps smile

Wanksock Thu 12-Jan-12 23:59:43

Thank you, that is really helpful!! He wears the specs all the time at nursery at least so that is good!

johnworf Sun 15-Jan-12 21:46:11

Hi cheekyginger. Do you remember I asked about my DD's maybe squint back in December last year?

Well, on your advice, I rang my HV who got her referred to an orthoptist. We saw her last week and she has undoubtably got a squint in her right eye. I feel awful that I didn't pursue it sooner but hey ho.

The orthoptist has now made me a further appointment with one someone else there (her boss or an eye specialist, not sure) to have DD's eyes dilated and tested to see if she needs glasses and patching or just patching.

I am just wondering if you could give me an idea of what they will do at her next appointment i.e. how will they test her eyes? She's only 3.5. How will they decide she needs glasses?

Many thanks.

PuffofSmoke Sun 15-Jan-12 21:58:06

Hi Ginger, I last called for your expertise when DD first got glasses 6 months ago when she was 16 months. She loves her glasses now and keeps them on no trouble at all (hope that gives hope to those of you with dc going to get glasses).

Anyway she had a hospital appointment on Friday, the hospital were thrilled that she had kept the glasses on and that the squint was much improved with the glasses on but worse with the glasses off. They tested her eyes again an said because there is no difference in the sight out of the two eyes patching wouldn't work and to continue with her glasses. I didn't ask but meant to, will she ever be 'cured' as such or will she always squint so badly (her eye pretty much disappears) when she takes her glasses off? I don't mind, she doesn't look right without the glasses now but I'm sure she wont be happy about it when she is a bit older! Any advice welcome! Thanks smile

DestinationUnknown Mon 16-Jan-12 09:35:53

Hello - what a lovely thread, thank you cheekyginger .

I have a question about my 4.8 yo ds, who I think may have a small squint. He's had his standard sight tests at school and no concerns came back from that, however I noticed in a picture I took of him last week that when he's focussing on something a little way beyond him (in this case looking up at the monkey bars as he stretched up to them) that his left eye turns inwards more than his right eye.

Is this ok or should I get him seen by an optician? I've noticed this before but just from photos not really in person. None of this would have been mentioned at the sight test as I wasn't there, I don't know if it would be picked up on or not in that case?

If helpful and you have time we could PM and I can email you the pic!
Thanks very much.

Oblomov Tue 17-Jan-12 09:59:13

Thank you for this OP.
ds1(8) has a squint and has patched, under local hospital. They recently suggested discharging , to local optician. Fine, But I was not happy. They will not operate, saying that he is not that cross eyed, he's not that bad, but i found them just too dismissive of the aesthetics of how bad 'looking' my ds's eyes sometimes are. I know that the vision is the most important thing. I know its only cosmetic. But lets be honest, if we all finally admit, that sometimnes, being cross-eyed can be a little bit, well, disorientating , or odd looking, or even, can I say it, a tiny bit disfiguring really. I know thats harsh, but it makes my heart weep when my son who hates weraing glasses, ( He will always need glasses)(he is the only boy in his year who wears glasses), and begs for contacts. But I am thinking that the galsses actually hide his cross eyed ness quite a bit. And if you only had contatcs , it would make his cross eyed ness even more obvious. I feel neurotic and pushy when I try and explain this to the consultant, but I am onyl fighting for my son , making sure I have done all I can for him ( I fought for 2 eyars , to get him diagnosed as Aspergers, not just my 'crap parenting', so I am all for fighting).
I am not even sure if surgery would be best, maybe not. can anything be done through vision therapy, and all the exercises that they seem to favour in the US, to try and get to the core problem rather than just haveing 5 or 6 surgeries to correct it, like they do in the UK? I don't know. But i would kick myself if i later found out there was more I could have done for him, had I known. Please advise.

Tgger Tue 17-Jan-12 15:03:51

Hello again! Just catching up, glad to see you are still here smile.

Took DS for his appointment today and found out he has a small squint and a lazy eye -probably caused by the squint. The lazy eye is hmmm not sure if I've got this right, 4 times worse than normal vision (?)- well certainly he couldn't read the medium sized letters she showed him with that eye but could do them easily with the other. Unfortunately we have to be referred on again before he gets any treatment and that appointment isn't until the end of March. Rather frustrating, but I'm hoping another couple of months won't make too much difference to treatment- he was 5 in October.

So treatment will probably be patching and maybe/probably (?) glasses too as may be long sighted. For the next appointment I have to put drops in his eyes before it, not looking forward to that!- any advice/tips? Also I have been advised to get my daughter (3) tested as squints can run in families. My sister had one as a child but hers was very obvious whereas we hadn't picked up on DS's at all- so pleased the screening picked it up.

psketti Tue 17-Jan-12 15:45:32

Thank you so much for the reply Cheekyginger. I think that's the first time I've understood what's happening in 4 years of hospital appointments! Much appreciated.

JKSLtd Wed 18-Jan-12 10:14:35

Cheekyginger - just wanted to pop back & update. We had DD's appointment the other day and it went very well smile

Her left eye does tend to 'drift' but it is not a concern & we have to go back in 6 months just to be sure.
She was a star for all the tests smile

Thanks on behalf of everybody you're helping.

EustaciaVye Wed 18-Jan-12 17:52:39

Oblomov - you sum up how I feel about my DD sad However, I have been told by cheekyginger and DDs orthoptist that contacts will have the same effect as glasses - ie, if the eye doesnt wander with glasses on then it wont with contacts in smile Fingers crossed. DD is only 5 so cant test it yet but my heart weeps when I see her eye wander...

Oblomov Fri 20-Jan-12 18:02:04

Thank you Vye. I know it sounds terrible, but it does make me sad that ds is cross eyed. I just don't want him to be taunted at all.
But I hope you are right and the contacts will hide it.

stripeysock Sat 21-Jan-12 20:57:56

Hi Cheeky Ginger,

chuffed to find your thread.
I am longsighted and our kids have been watched by orthoptics every six months since six months of age. DD 3.5 has +2.25 in each eye and has been told to wear glasses. she has been 2.25 for a year. The appointment was really rushed with my 1 yr old going mental through most of it. The Optician asked me if she stood close to the tv when watching I said yes and he said she ought to have glasses then.

Dh thinks it might make her eyes worse if she doesn't really need them. I think why should we hold her back in education etc if it would improve her vision. Im Feeling really confused, please advise if you can.

specialagentmeh Sun 22-Jan-12 08:59:55

Hi cheekyginger, thank you for this thread.
My DS, 3 months, was born with hydrocephalus, so his eyes and eye movements have never looked 100% normal. His eyes have always flickered around and he sometimes had 'sunrise' eyes with white showing above the pupil.
He was treated when he was 8 days old with a surgically fitted shunt, which is working well, so the excess fluid pressure on his brain is gone.
The sunrise effect is less, and he can track objects with his eyes, but he now has a squint. It isn't stable, either eye might turn in, depending where he is looking. At the moment it is more often the left eye.

DS also has short periods where his eyes flick all around and don't seem to focus. He did have an eye check in the neo natal unit before his op and they didn't spot anything for follow up there.

Phew, long background! My question, besides a general interest whether you have come across hydrocephalus related vision problems in your work, is really about referral. I'd really like him to see an eye specialist like you. I saw the GP yesterday and she said they wouldn't refer, he is too little and the presentation of the squint wasn't consistent enough. Also, that as it was likely a residual effect of earlier problems they'd leave any referral to the specialists who'd treated him, which is fair enough.

At what age do you start assessing and treating babies?

We do have a follow up next week at the neurosurgery clinic in Great Ormond St and I'm keen to be able to ask the right questions about DS vision, squint and eye movements and get referred in to a specialist. They are great, but they are so busy and time with the consultant goes so quickly! I've videoed one of DS spells of flickering eyes/eye turning in. Is there anything else you think I should be ready with?

cheekyginger Sun 22-Jan-12 22:04:11

Hi Destination unkown,
If he has had his eyes tested then its unlikely to be a true squint. By what you describe it sounds more like what we would call a pseudosquint, a "fake" squint. It will likely be an optical illusion caused by the shape of your LO nose or shape of his eyes etc.
If you feel you are noticing it more often or when you are looking straight at him then definitely take him to your local optician.

I'll be back asap to answer the rest of the questions asap, now i must sleeeeep! smile

cheekyginger Mon 23-Jan-12 16:40:50

Hi Oblomov,

Im sorry to hear that you are finding it all very traumatic. The eye Dr's make their decisions regarding squint surgery on the measurements of the squint rather than what it looks like. Your child may have a squint that doesnt measure a lot (even though you feel it is "bad") therefore any surgery may result in an overcorrection of the squint and the eye would turn the other way. Your child's face is still growing and this may alter the appearance of a squint as his face grows. Convergent squint tend to look slightly smaller with age.

If you are not happy you could ask your GP to refer to for a 2nd opinion, but be prepared to hear the same thing.

If your DS does not have any binocular vision (3D vision) then eye exercises would not be an option. In the uk the vast majority of childhood squints require 1 operation. If it is a very large squint then a 2nd op will be required.

cheekyginger Mon 23-Jan-12 16:49:32

Hi Tggr,

Well done the screening!!!

Our policy for the glasses check is within 6 weeks but march will be ok. They will likely get the glasses going first then start the patching once fully settled into the glasses.

If you were desperate to get seen sooner, you could stop into any high street optician. That might be a bit naughty, but you could have glasses within a few days. This wouldn't affect the treatment at all. Your son could still have the glasses check done at the end of March and they can do any fine tuning they think is required. But don't tell them i said that!!! smile

DestinationUnknown Tue 24-Jan-12 12:39:19

Thanks v much cheekyginger - great advice.

cheekyginger Wed 25-Jan-12 21:30:45

Hi stripeysock,
A child standing close to the tv is not an indication for glasses. Were you referring to your 1 year old or your 3.5 year old needing the glasses confused?

I would recommend a referral an orthoptist at your local eye clinic prior to getting glasses for a 1 year old. Giving glasses at this age is only really required if their is a big difference between the 2 eyes OR if the prescription is really high (>+3.00). This should really be monitored by an eye clinic so that glasses are not prescribed when your child is too young but also so they can be given if the prescription doesnt reduce over 6-12 months.

If it's your 3.5 yo that requires them then the glasses would be good. We recommend glasses for full time wear. The glasses will not make her eyes worse....

cheekyginger Wed 25-Jan-12 21:47:44

Hi specialagentmeh,

Assessment at this age is all about observation and no babies are too young to be referred. However, your neuro surgeons may suggest to wait for a while before referral, as babies eyes are really un-co-ordinated until about 6 months of age. They might want to wait for a wee while to see how your LO's eyes settle. The ophthalmologist (eye Dr) wouldnt do any treatment at this age anyway.
A video clip is excellent, its the quickest way for the Dr to see exactly what you are seeing. Once the hydrocephalus is under control then his eyes will hopefully "stabilise"....good luck with your appointment smile

specialagentmeh Thu 26-Jan-12 19:20:08

Thanks very much cheeky ginger. Our appointment is on Monday, will keep you posted.

stripeysock Thu 26-Jan-12 20:17:53

Thankyou for your reply.
It was the 3.5 yr old, we are seeing the eye clinic.
I thought they wouldn't make her eyes worse but my partner was convinced they would.
You helped clear that one up. x

Oblomov Thu 26-Jan-12 21:11:34

Thank you so much for your response OP.
When my son does not wear his glasses, I see how badly cross eyed he is. I see it at its most natural. And that I hate. I know it may not be 'THAT' bad to a consultant, but it 'looks' very very bad to me.
Your response hasn't helped, IFYWIM. But I do appreciate it. Thank you very much. sad

EustaciaVye Sat 28-Jan-12 13:14:59

Oblomov - just sent you a DM as we are in same situation....

cheekyginger Sat 28-Jan-12 16:27:12

Hi Oblomov and EustaciaVye,

Sorry i cant give some more positive information.

The only other advice i can give is that some children can learn "misty/clear" a trick to help the eye stay straight without their glasses on. They have to be of an age to be motivated to try it
I will have a go at explaining it!!!!
Sit in front of your child and lift their glasses up just out their line of sight....initially their eye might be very briefly "straight". If this is the case then you can teach them to "use" this. When the glasses first get lifted up their vision will immediatetly be misty and when they focus to make it clear the eye then squints. So you can teach them when their vision is misty (without their glasses) their eyes will be "straight", but when they focus their eye to make their vision clear the eye then squints..... This is not an exercise, it is purely a trick of the accommodation of the eye to change the position of the eye for short periods of time and allows the eyes to look straighter.... Hope that makes some senseconfused?

Tgger Sun 29-Jan-12 21:54:51

Thanks cheekyginger! I think we will wait. Not keen on two lots of testing...... will let you know how we get on come March. Thanks again. Great to have this thread.

cheekyginger Mon 30-Jan-12 07:58:20

No probs Tgger, good luck with your appointment smile

Priorknowledge Mon 30-Jan-12 16:22:27

I had this on it's own thread but just found this thread now and would appreciate advice - her perscription is R +4.5 L +4.5

Hi everyone this is my first post on the site!
I am wondering if anyone uses contact lenses for their children. My DD is 5 and has been wearing glasses for 1.5 years. She has a squint but needs glasses for sight too. She has really long eyelashes and I have been through loads of different frames but they all squash her eyelashes against the lense(as it is her eyelashes already grow sidewards from being squashed up against the glass)

Added to this she has a slight hip impairment that makes her trip often and the glasses fall off or go flying and I'm afraid they will smash on her face or get walked on in the yard (she only started school this year) So thinking contact lenses might be an option but never heard of this for a younger child. Will her squint go away because as soon as the glasses are off - for bed, swimming it's there immediately Anyone any idea's?

cheekyginger Mon 30-Jan-12 21:01:10

Hi priorknowledge,

It's unlikely any optician would give her contacts at this age, but never say never. You could phone around opticians in your area. It would really depend on how keen your DD is to wear them.

The type of squint that you describe is a fully accomodative squint, which means the glasses fully correct it. In the future contact lenses will have the same effect as the glasses. In the meantime, prescription swimming goggles may help around the pool.

If you have a look at the post 3 before yours i attempt to give an explanation of teaching misty/clear a technique to help keep the eyes briefly straight without the glasses. Tricky to describe in writing!

Priorknowledge Tue 31-Jan-12 21:57:43

Thank you so much for your advice cheekyginger you are so good to share your expertise with us.
Just wondering why the opticians are slow to prescribe the lenses - is it because they can't manage them or the risk of infection (I was thinking of disposables) or are they not as good as glasses for the actual sight.
She does martial arts and looks to be heading for national level so trying to get ahead of myself for the future - maybe the goggles would work but I can't see her wanting to wear them on the mat. She isn't aware of her squint yet so the misty eye thing isn't an option but I have made a note of it for the future for her.

Whyriskit Wed 01-Feb-12 12:56:46

Cheeky Ginger, it's very good of you to give us your advice!
DS1 is 4 and has been attending the local eye hospital since he was 18.5 as his childminder had noticed his eye turning out.
His vision is broadly normal (don't have numbers but he doesn't wear glasses!) but his squint is not improving. At the last appointment, the consultant told us that he would probably need an operation and that this would be done when he was 5.
I did query if this was purely for cosmetic reasons but the consultant said that if the operation was not performed it would eventually start affecting DS1's eyesight.
While I'm a bit scared of DS1 going under a GA, I'm happy for him to have the operation, but curious as to why patching isn't a possibility?

Seona1973 Wed 01-Feb-12 20:15:19

if the eyesight is the same in both eyes then patching is pointless as it is used to improve vision. DD had an eye op around age 4 as her squint was still noticeable while wearing her glasses. I was nervous about the GA but everything went well and thankfully she wont need another op.

Notinmykitchen Tue 07-Feb-12 14:36:51

Hi, thanks for starting this thread. I have a question for you. I have a 4 year old DS who wears glasses for long sightedness. He has no problem with this the vast majority of the time. The issue we have is he plays football twice a week, and every time without fail, his glasses get knocked off, or a ball hits them, and he gets hurt.

We have thought about getting contact lenses , just for football, so today we asked the optician, and were told that contact lenses are not suitable for children under 13. The reasons given for this, were that young children are not mature enough to look after contact lenses, and there is a risk of infection if they are not kept clean. This did not make sense to us. Both DH and I wear contact lenses, and have no problem with them. Obviously we would look after them for him, and if necessary assist DS with putting them in and taking them out. We are tempted to order some daily disposables over the internet, and give them a try, but obviously don't want to do that, if there is some medical reason we shouldn't. What are your thoughts on this?

Notinmykitchen Tue 07-Feb-12 14:37:49

Apologies, I have just read back and realised that was almost the same question as Priorknowledge asked blush

cheekyginger Tue 07-Feb-12 20:51:48

Hi Priorknowledge,

Its really up to the optometrist (optician) to decide when a child can wear lenses, as it depends on each child. It is all to do with the getting the CL's in and out of the eye safely and having strict hand hygiene to reduce the chance of infection.
The other risk is over wearing the contact lenses and therefore causing damage to cornea (front part of the eye).
CL's are just as good as glasses for the vision. smile

cheekyginger Tue 07-Feb-12 20:58:13

Hi Whyriskit,

As Seona said the patching is purely treat the vision if the vision is lazy.

Your DS sounds as though he has what we call an intermittent exotropia, intermittent meaning its not there all the time and exotropia meaning the eye turns outwards. If a squint is intermittent then generally the vision does not become lazy and therefore patching is not required.
By leaving your son till he is 5 for an operation they are just making sure that they are giving his eyes some time to work by themselves and see is he gains better control over time. If it was to happen much more often or he was starting to complain (with out being asked!) of headaches, sore eyes etc then surgery may be carried out sooner. Surgery for this type of squint is generally not cosmetic it will improve the function of your child's 3D vision. It would only affect his actual eyesight if it was to become constant and therefore the squinting eye would become visually lazy.... Hope that helps grin

cheekyginger Tue 07-Feb-12 21:07:07

Hi Notinmykitchen,

I have no issues with people ordering lenses over the internet, as adults have a fairly standard size of cornea (front part of the eye).*BUT for young children the fit would not be correct, as the cornea would be much smaller then the standard size of lens.* The after care appointments with your optician are really important to ensure the eye is healthy and the eyes are tolerating the lenses.
IMO your DS is way too young for CL's even though you and your DS are obviously longterm lens wearers. How about sports goggles for the meantime? And by the time your DS is 8 or 9ish, you may have managed to persuade your optician!!!

Notinmykitchen Wed 08-Feb-12 16:46:12

Thanks for that cheekyginger. Its nice to have a definitive answer that makes sense. We have ordered some sports glasses today, and hopefully that will solve the problem, until he is old enough to give lenses a try.

cheekyginger Fri 10-Feb-12 09:33:04

No probs Notinmykitchen, good luck with the sports glasses smile

BuriedUnderChocolates Fri 10-Feb-12 17:40:08

This is great cheekyginger, really pleased to find this.

My son 4 has come home from school with a letter to say that his eyes have been tested and he has reduced vision in both eyes and has been refered to the hospital.

He has delayed speech and so has trouble understanding instructions, is it possible that he has been asked to identify a picture for instance and hasn't understood what was being asked of him or not known what the picture was.

Is this how the test works or does it not rely on the child answering correctly?

thanks cheeky

cheekyginger Wed 15-Feb-12 21:24:29

Hi buriedunderchocolates,

In Scotland the screening is done using a picture test OR a matching letter test. But in my department we would always practice the "game" first so that we know what a child can and cant do. With the picture test we make sure they can name all the pictures before we start.

You might find once you go to the appointment they just wanted to recheck your LO's vision. There is always a number of kids that just need another go at the test a few weeks/months later to get the hang of it. smile

cheekyginger Fri 17-Feb-12 18:50:39


mamakoukla Sat 18-Feb-12 02:23:37

Cheeky, I have a question but it relates to an adult.

Monocular diplopia but there isn't a firm diagnosis. Nothing appears to be wrong with the eye nor is there any sign of underlying illness e.g. nerve etc. Definitely in one eye, does show some variation in the degree of severity (i.e. the extent to which double vision occurs), loss of ability to do fine-detailed work as cannot visually resolve the detail.

Original diagnosis was possible cataract as nothing else could be seen, then became the lens is ageing faster than is should and is less flexible.

Do you have any suggestions? I am at my wits end some days... it's frightening to suddenly lose good eyesight. I am dominant in one eye (the one which is giving all of the problems), to the point that I cannot read with the other eye alone, and have no stereo vision.

mamakoukla Sat 18-Feb-12 02:24:33

Forgot to add... great thread and so helpful to many, many parents

brew and thanks

Wanksock Sat 18-Feb-12 11:33:25

Hi again, the hospital now want DS to wear a patch for 2 hours per day over the squinting eye. This is proving very difficult, we are managing around 20 mins per day tops. he's only had it a week, but any good tips? Have tried bribery!

Another question I have is, if DS has his glasses on can he see perfectly faraway with them? The reason I ask is that if I look through them, I can see close up things ok but far away is very blurry.

Seona1973 Sat 18-Feb-12 11:47:47

are you sure it is supposed to be worn over the squinting eye? DD's squinting eye was the one with poorer sight and she had to wear a patch over the non-squinting eye.

Wanksock Sat 18-Feb-12 12:42:59

Oh yeah, sorry that's what I meant!! It's the good eye that the patch goes on.

Wanksock Sat 18-Feb-12 12:43:33

Tired today!

BirdyBedtime Sun 19-Feb-12 17:25:56

Hi cheekyginger

I posted earlier on the thread about DD who was undergoing patching and you gave some good advice. We had our final visit to orthoptist this week and after 3 static visits have now stopped patching with her weak eye only able to see the 4th line on the chart and no BV. We have accepted this and were quite glad to be finished the patching after 9 months or so.

Unfortunately we had DS (just turned 3) at the optician for an eye test yesterday and his vision has deteriorated since last year (around +4 in both eyes), and he is now showing signs of a lazy eye sad. We have to go back in a week for drops to get a proper prescription which the optician is estimating as + 6 in one eye and +8 in the other. We have resigned ourselves to having to go through the whole process again with DS, who hopefully will adjust to glasses/patching with few problems as he's seen DD go through it.

I am really hoping that as he has been caught earlier than DD we will be able to achieve BV (which he doesn't now have but we think he might have had it earlier as he has developed balance which DD never had).

In your experience do children treated earlier and with a smaller gap between the 2 eyes have a better chance of achieving BV with patching?


cheekyginger Sun 19-Feb-12 19:09:49

Hi Mamakoukla,

DO you mind me asking what age you are?

Cataracts can cause monocular double vision. The light going into the eye gets "split" as it passes through the lens and can result in double vision.

You say you have no stereo vision. Have you had problems since childhood? If you have a dominant eye you might be able to get referred to discuss cataract removal if it is interfering with your everyday life. Their are risk associated with cataract surgery but if you feel it is stopping you functioning then the Dr's may consider removing the lens???? If you want more information please PM me anytime... smile

cheekyginger Sun 19-Feb-12 19:22:34

Hi Wanksock,

Patching.....Patience is really important!!!!! Try and gradually build up to the 2 hours over a couple of weeks. Each day try and do 5 mins longer. Get some kind of silly timer that will count down for him, and make a big deal when time is up.

Try and have "patch time". Have a box of toys that he only gets when he gets his patch on and make it a fun time. Colouring in/aqua draw mats anything that is a distraction will help.
Cant remember what age your DS is, but you could let him watch TV with it on shock. TV doesnt damage your eyes as some people seem to think!!! (Some of the crap i watch might damage my brain though! wink)
A sticker chart?

Main thing to remember anytime with the patch on will help....dont get too disheartened is you dont manage your goal everyday smile

IQuiteLikeVodka Sun 19-Feb-12 19:30:47

Hi cheeky
An update to my previous post regarding my one year old son,he has had his first appointment and the woman said yes it is very likely to be Duane's Retraction. He will have further tests in March to rule out unlikely possibilities etc.
Thanks again smile

cheekyginger Sun 19-Feb-12 20:19:11

Oooo forgot to add....yes wanksock he will be able to see faraway with them, its just that you probably have normal vision therefore they will blur your vision!!

Hi BirdyBedtime,

Bet you are glad you DD has finished the patching!

As for your DS. Does he attend the hospital eye service? (In Scotland we have opticians in the NHS and private that's why i ask). If not he should really be referred. Children at this age need to monitored by orthoptist's who specialise in squints/lazy eyes etc. If children have an underlying squint they have to be in their strongest prescription to prevent the squint from breaking down and losing their 3D vision. The prescription sometimes reduces with age. Just to add i really dont anything against opticians my DH is one!!

Was your DS given the +4's last year? Hopefully your DS might get away without needing any patching....fingers crossed.

cheekyginger Sun 19-Feb-12 20:21:10

Hi IQuiteLikeVodka,

Thanks for letting me know. It's good know i'm making some sense!

It will become a party trick when he is older!!! grin

MrsPort Sun 19-Feb-12 22:17:50

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

cheekyginger Mon 20-Feb-12 10:08:42

Hi MrsPort TMI ALERT!!!

Your poor wee DS has been through the works!! A sixth nerve palsy at his age is very rare therefore the Dr's may have limited experience with managing such conditions.

Here are my answers for your questions:
1) Surgery is carried out for one of two reasons. To make the eye look better OR to make the eyes function together and strengthen 3D vision. Surgery does not improve the vision.

2) There is only a certain number of time an eye muscle can be operated on, as they are so small even in adults. After surgery some degree of scar tissue will build up making future surgery on that muscle unpredictable. So I have to agree with the orthoptist. (And our consultant would say the same thing as me!)

3) We would reduce and stop the patching, and monitor the vision. If it drops by less then one line of pictures then it stays off. We would only restart patching if it dropped significantly.
Patching can be done up until the age of 8 when the visual centre in the brain becomes less "plastic". Have you been given a rough verbal treatment plan? When do they plan to stop the patching?
As for double vision, does your DS complain of double vision??? I would have thought he wouldn't experience double vision. The brain does "shut off" the eye but this is temporary and it's called suppression. The suppression prevents children from getting double vision when the eye squints and this can cause the vision to get lazy in children. If you have a nerve palsy as an adult you get double vision but the vision doesnt get lazy as the cells in the brain are fully developed.

4) He should be able to have further surgery to straighten the eye. If he does have double vision then he should adapt to it and it shouldn't affect him to much in day to day activities. Unless he has something wrong with the eye itself he should not go blind!!

IMO you might benefit from a 2nd opinion. When you describe the surgery it sounds as though only one muscle was operated on. If this is the case i am really surprised. It not wrong it just wouldnt be enough....
In nerve plasies that do not recover, transposition surgery is required to help maintain the eye position. This type of surgery uses other functioning muscle in the eye to help the weaker one. It is not a surgery often carried out on children.

You can pm me if you want any more info. Do you live in Scotland? Our consultant receives referrals from all over Scotland for 2nd opinions if you are...

BirdyBedtime Tue 21-Feb-12 12:58:26

Thanks cheekyginger.

He didn't get glasses last year (not sure why looking back although possibly because they were equal then?). The optician (different one this year) said that if the weak eye improves sometimes he can manage in practice (and even do patching in some cases).

To be honest I'm not keen to go down the hospital route again as it was not very efficient and seemed an odd model to me (first referral with DD was to another optician in a local town where they did the drops again and saw an orthoptist from the hospital - then hospital 2 monthly, but appointments not sent out etc) PLUS I'm being seen at the same building for eye problems so feel like I should take out shares!

DS will get glasses after drops next week (poor thing doesn't really have a bridge yet so not sure how we are going to keep them on). He appeared not to have BV when tested on Saturday sad but optician said no squint apparent.
Very glad to have finished patching with DD but obviously would have liked to have achieved better vision in the weak eye.

I do wonder how he is managing to see anything with +6/8 - he can point out the duck in the Farmyard Tales books, even the mini ones, and has no problems with grasping etc? He can even form one or two letters pretty well already.

cheekyginger Tue 21-Feb-12 21:53:25

Hi BB,

Thats a shame you weren't happy with your DD's experience. I dont blame you for not wanting to go down that route again.

If your DS was attending our clinic this is what we would be doing:

Prescribe the glasses for full time wear
Why? The difference in prescription between the 2 eyes could be whats causing the vision to be a bit lazy, and whats making your DS appear to have no BV. If the glasses are worn full time he will be less likely to need patching.

Review in 6-8weeks
Why? To make sure he is tolerating the glasses and ensure the vision is improving. If no improvement of vision in bad/lazy eye start patching. If improvement wait till next visit.

Review in another 6-8 weeks
Why? If vision is not equal then patching is started.

Monitored every 8 weeks.
Why? The reason the visits are so frequent is to allow the vision to be monitored closely so that treatment can be adjusted accordingly.

It really concerns me that the optician is talking about trying patching in private practice hmm. It is not illegal, but generally speaking optometrists (opticians) in the UK have only a very small amount of training in this area and as a general rule they refer to the nearest orthoptic department, as this is a very specialist area (unless they have a seperate degree in orthoptics of course!!).

Hopefully he is in his glasses at a young enough age that the vision may not require patching, and if the vision improves then he should achieve BV. And you can happily ignore all my "moanings"!!!!!

And the good news is.....if he doesn't have a squint there is no reason he wont achieve BV grin.

Wanksock Wed 22-Feb-12 11:25:19

Thank you for your answers cheekyginger!

DS has just turned 3. I am so pleased because today he managed the 2 hours of patching! Hopefully we can keep this up every day!!! He is excited to get his new glasses today (action man) from specsavers, they are really cute.

This thread is fab thanks

BirdyBedtime Thu 23-Feb-12 12:21:38

Thanks again cheekyginger you are brilliant giving your time like this.

I was a little surprised when the optician said he could do patching in practice as I had thought it was policy to be referred to the hospital. I'll bear your comments in mind, but am really hoping that the glasses will be enough.

I am still a bit annoyed about the different policies that seem to apply even within Lothian for screening - I think West do pre-school but East and Mid do P1 - which is why DD was caught so late. If she had been screened a year earlier she might have gained better vision in her weak eye as she was 5.7 by the time she was screened. I am tempted to raise it with NHS Lothian, but think we might just get palmed off.

cheekyginger Thu 23-Feb-12 15:26:06

Hi BB,

It's no problem smile. Still on maty leave and have a baby that is a good napper!!

It's also been a bit of an eye opener for me to read what parent go through and take away from their visits. Think i will be a different person when i go back to work!!!

As for the screening. Think they had major staffing problems that prevented Orthoptic-led pre-school screening in all areas of Lothian. I know that doesnt help you now but would worth talking to your local orthoptic dept and even your local MP. If more parents complain then the powers that be might get their fingers out and fund extra Orthoptic posts!! So we could have the 100% coverage we are aiming for in Scotland!!!

cheekyginger Sun 26-Feb-12 20:14:19


Hi Cheekyginger

This is a great thread.
I have a couple of questions about my DSs as we got their eyes tested over half term.
DS1 (aged 8) is mildly longsighted +0.25 in one eye and +0.75 in the other plus a small degree of astigmatism. The optometrist recommended glasses for close up work because she was concerned that the difference between the eyes might be causing some problems. DS does skip lines when reading sometimes so is it reasonable that a difference of +0.5 between the eyes is enough to cause problems?

DS2 (aged 4.5) is seriously long sighted (+6.75 and +7 tested with eye drops). We have been given a referral letter for our GP to refer him to the local eye hospital (we're in England) to check for a lazy eye. In the meantime he has been given a much lower prescription of +2. I was wondering why he wasn't given the full prescription straight away?

johnworf Sun 26-Feb-12 23:20:19

Hi cheekyginger

Just checking in to let you know what happened when we saw the orthoptist.

Our initial visit confirmed that DD does indeed have a lazy eye and so we were given another appointment to see the consultant (of eyes? wink) who would examine her after drops were put in.

So we saw the latter last week and he confirmed that she would need glasses. He's given her a prescription of +1.25 for both eyes and she'll be reviewed in 3 months time. He told me this was the maximum they could give her at this point.

No patching to start with and I think they're going with the 'suck it and see' approach. He did explain to me about the 3 types of squint - sorry I cannot recall the technicalities of it all but I'm sure you know what I'm on about - and the interim time until the next review will hopefully show which one she has and whether it's glasses or surgery she needs.

So pleased that I got this sorted finally. Thanks again for giving me the push I needed to get her a referral grin

BuriedUnderChocolates Mon 27-Feb-12 12:53:18

thanks cheeky, you answered my question about my son's speech affecting his eye test a few weeks back, I've only just found it blush

His appointment letter has arrived for April, so will have to wait and see how he gets on, but it sounds like they will be used to it and hopefully will have time to make sure he understands.

BirdyBedtime Tue 28-Feb-12 09:47:29

Just thought I'd update on my DS. He had his appointment with the drops yesterday and was such a star with the pictures. His prescription has come out at +7 and +7.5 - actually not as bad as I had been steeling myself for so strangely positive. He can see the equivalent of the second bottom line with his +7 eye (corrected) but only between the third and fourth with his other eye. Again possibly better than expected as that is similar to the level of vision that DD has achieved in her weak eye (corrected) after 8 months of patching!

The optician is confident (with the usual caveats that every child is different etc) that because there is such a small difference between the eyes, that he has that level of vision in his weaker eye and his age that we will have a better outcome for him than for DD. The glasses should arrive in the next few days and then we'll see how well he wears them.

The optician explained really well about how it won't really improve what he sees in each eye, but just that he won't have to work like he has been to see it. I had been struggling to understand how he could have such a strong prescription and see anything! It certainly explains why he is often very tired and rubs his eyes. He also explained about why he has no BV yet (due to the brain not being able to develop this as it's working so hard just to see anything!) so again we are hoping that he'll get there too.

Will keep you updated.

Hope you are enjoying your ML! When do you go back to work?

cheekyginger Tue 28-Feb-12 16:02:51

Hi ChazsBA,

For DS 1, I think it's fair enough to have a trial with the glasses. It's unlikely that the small +0.50 difference would cause any difficulty but it's worth ruling it out. A good indication that the glasses are helping will be your DS will want to wear them!

For you DS2: TBH i dont understand why the optom has given such a low prescription. Some people think it helps kids to settle into their glasses by giving a weaker prescription, however this had been proven with studies that it is not required and just wastes a bit of time. It wont do your DS any harm it just means he will get his glasses changed as soon as they retest him at the eye clinic. smile

cheekyginger Tue 28-Feb-12 16:08:19

Hi johnworf,

Thanks for the update, and glad you got the referral. Good luck at your next review. smile

Hi buriedUC, im sure he'll fly through it in April, good luck. grin

cheekyginger Tue 28-Feb-12 16:12:42

Hi BB,

Thats good news about your DS's prescription. Hope he gets on ok with the glasses. Can take a few days for him to settle into them.
Fingers crossed that he wont need any patching....

I'm off till May BB. Taken the full year!! It's been great, but i am actually looking forward to going back to work, but not looking forward to putting my DS in nursery :-( I'm sure he'll love it, seems to be a sociable wee boy, just me worrying about it though!!!

whyme2 Fri 02-Mar-12 13:12:18

Hi cheeky

Wondered if I could pose a question. It seems very minor when I've read some posts on here but my mind is worrying anyway.

Yesterday ds age 5 came home from school with a slip saying he had not passed the standard eye test (done at school) as one eye did not meet the required standard.
There was no other information on the slip about this but a sentence saying he has been referred to the local clinic to see an optometrist.

Now I am worrying about everything. Is it likely to be a lazy eye or a need for glasses or something else. How long will we wait for an appt and is there anything I can do in the meantime.
Ds is doing very well at school so it does not seem to be holding him back.

Thank you.

BirdyBedtime Fri 02-Mar-12 15:21:43

Hi cheeky

DS got his glasses yesterday and despite them making his eyes look HUGE, they don't look too bad and seem to be staying on his nose. We'll wait and see what nursery brings next week though as I do have some concerns about that ......

Just a little thing, when we were reading his story at bedtime last night he kept peering over them saying he couldn't see properly through them (to try and see the duck on the Farmyard Tales book). Should I be worried about this or will this just be him getting used to not having to work so hard to focus?


BirdyBedtime Fri 02-Mar-12 16:01:25

Should have added that I'm sure your DS will love nursery - both of mine have loved it and it really brings on their development and social skills (and you'll get used to leaving him although for me there is still, even after 6 years of doing it a teeny bit of guilt sometimes). DS has recently moved from the Tweenie (2-3) Room to the pre-school room and has just come on leaps and bounds.

Carrotcakeisace Fri 02-Mar-12 22:19:12

Hi cheeky

Dd1 6.8 has been prescribed glasses today but her prescription appears very mild to me. The optician has given her +0.75 -0.5 180 in both eyes, given that all children start out longsighted does she really need these glasses? She is very distressed at having to wear the, and the optician didn't make himself very clear. TIA

BeehavingBaby Fri 02-Mar-12 22:26:05

Hello, what a generous thing to do OP!

I was wondering if you have any opinion on behavioural optometry? I feel desperately guilty that DD2's squint wasn't treated early enough to leave her with stereopsis and behavioural optometrists claim to be able to improve this.

Happy to share patching stories, tips, pats on the back etc ;o)

cheekyginger Fri 02-Mar-12 22:26:25

Hi whyme2,

The optometrist will carry out a glasses test (refraction) on your son. If the vision is unequal this is generally caused by an unequal prescription and can cause the vision to be lazy in one eye. Im sorry but i wouldnt be able to say if he will require patching or not. It all depends on what they find when they carry out the refraction.
Try not to worry. There is nothing you can do at the moment. You wouldnt have noticed any problems as his other eye will be compensating and he wouldnt be aware of it. Good luck with your apt smile

cheekyginger Fri 02-Mar-12 22:30:05

Hi BB,

From what you describe it is likely he is adjusting to his glasses. If he's still saying it in a few weeks let me know.

Thanks for your positive comments about nursery. Just got him booked in today for his settling in days in April...think he will love it! Just me that needs to take a chill pill!

cheekyginger Fri 02-Mar-12 22:33:34

Hi carrotcakeisace,

Does she have any symptoms? Sore head when reading, eye strain etc?

It's fair enough that they have given them a try, but as you said it is a mild prescription so if she really doesnt want to wear them i wouldnt push it. You are not going to do any harm by doing this. And it will NOT affect her school work etc.
Try and get her to out them in when doing close work at home and see if she feels any benefit from them. Some people find a prescription like this will help when reading for long periods.

cheekyginger Fri 02-Mar-12 22:40:47

Hi BeehavingBaby,

TBH there is really NO scientific evidence that behavioural optometry works. Some people on here may claim that they do have successful outcomes but unfortunately there is just no evidence to suggest they do hmm.

Try not to feel guilty about your DD's situation. You'll find that it wont greatly affect her if she has never had BV. And these thing are completely out of your hands.
Children with squints develop suppression (ignore one eye) as a way of preventing double vision. If this suppression is tampered with then your DD could end up very symptomatic and risk wasting a lot of money. IMO steer clear of BH's.

Carrotcakeisace Fri 02-Mar-12 22:41:51

Thanks Cheeky, we suspect she may be dyslexic (family history, a lot of trouble with reading etc) and this seemed to be the deciding factor for the optician. She was tested last year by a different optician who said that although she was longsighted it didnt need correction

Will let her try them and she can decide if she wants to wear them

bsue Sat 03-Mar-12 09:17:56

Hi all, my son has severe long sight and has had a temporary prescription until he saw a consultant. His lenses magnify his eyes and I'm worried that now he has seen the consultant who says he will always need glasses and has increased his presciption that his eyes will be further magnified and the lense even more thick and heavy for him to wear. I have my own lenses thinned. Will thinning the lense help reduce the magnification for my son?
thanks for any help.

Seona1973 Sat 03-Mar-12 09:37:58

my dd always gets her lenses thinned so it should be an option for your ds

Seona1973 Sat 03-Mar-12 09:38:26

what prescription is he?

bsue Sat 03-Mar-12 12:03:58

Hi Seona, thanks for your reply. His prescription is + 7.50 -2.00 and +9.50 -2.50


PuffofSmoke Sat 03-Mar-12 15:50:24

Such good info on this thread! smile

DD has just turned 2, she has bad eye sight and a terrible squint, however is getting on great with her glasses and won't be parted from them. Anyway, my question is, we are going on our first 'sun' holiday this year - would she be able to get sunglasses? Is that a ridiculous question? Presumably if she had never worn glasses I wouldn't have bought her normal sunglasses as I wouldn't think she would keep them on? She always has seemed to have sensitive eyes, the only time she ever screams blue murder is when the sun gets in her eyes in the car, which is what got me thinking about sunglasses in the first place.

Seona1973 Sat 03-Mar-12 16:18:20

you can get prescription sunglasses - ask at her opticians

whyme2 Sat 03-Mar-12 16:25:36

Thank you cheeky

I have calmed down now and will wait for the appointment to come through now. Shouldn't be too long hopefully.

SmileItsSunny Sat 03-Mar-12 16:45:17

Hi cheeky ginger just thought I'd update. My 2 1/2 yr old DD had her second appt at hospital with orthoptist and (different) consultant. her vision has deteriorated so that she needs patch 1 hr a day, and now glasses for astigmatism.

I have a few questions that have occurred to me since the appointment...

Will the glasses help correct the bilateral divergent squint? Or would that only work if the glasses were correcting myopia?

She loves the patches - should we take advantage of this and keep them on longer?


SmileItsSunny Sat 03-Mar-12 16:49:04

Hi cheeky ginger just thought I'd update. My 2 1/2 yr old DD had her second appt at hospital with orthoptist and (different) consultant. her vision has deteriorated so that she needs patch 1 hr a day, and now glasses for astigmatism.

I have a few questions that have occurred to me since the appointment...

Will the glasses help correct the bilateral divergent squint? Or would that only work if the glasses were correcting myopia?

She loves the patches - should we take advantage of this and keep them on longer?


bsue Sun 04-Mar-12 16:52:18

Hi Cheeky Ginger, I'm new to this but having now read through all the posts in this thread, and having a DS with a high prescription, I have a number of questions I wonder if you would be kind enough to answer. He saw an optician who said he has severe longsightedness, made a referral to hospital and gave him a temporary prescription. His current lenses are thick but he has willingly worn them. The same optician was the 'consultant' at outpatients much to my surprise. She said his sight has slightly improved and gave the updated prescription +7.50 -2.00 and +9.50 -2.50 still high. He is 5yrs old. There was no mention of squint or lazy eye nor patching. Is he likely to need patching at some point? If we pay for his new lenses to be thinned, will this help with magnification of his eyes? Should he wear sports glasses with his degree of problem? Is further improvement likely? Many thanks.

cheekyginger Sun 04-Mar-12 18:31:26

Hi bsue,

I wasnt sure about this one so i asked my DH as he's an optometrist. How handy!!
He reckoned yes it would reduce the magnification of his eyes.

Check out this web page in the aspheric section. He also said this will cost you extra. His practice charge around £50 for thinning.

Hope that helped smile

cheekyginger Sun 04-Mar-12 19:56:35

bsue.....i hadnt realised you had posted again oops...confused

He would only need patching if his vision was reduced in one eye, and i thought this would have been mentioned before now.

See my earlier response about the magnification/thinning.

As for sports glasses it depends on what sports he is doing? Yes he has a high prescription but i have seen many kids that manage without their glasses for sports. It's a difficult one to answer as sometime you dont really know till they've tried them.

As for improvement, your DS is only 5 so some change can be expected as he grows but he will always need glasses. Contact lenses will be possible as well but will not be the cheaper daily option, more likely to be a 3 monthly disposable (DH again!) grin

cheekyginger Sun 04-Mar-12 20:10:55

No probs whyme2 smile

Hi SmileItsSunny,
Thats great your LO has taken to the patch so well!! I wouldnt want to say yes to increasing her patching without knowing her vision etc. If she was only given 1 hour then its likely her vision wasnt reduced too much, therefore you really wouldnt need to increase it. Have you got a contact number for the dept could you speak to one of the orthoptists and run it by them?

With regards to the squint. Is the squint constant or only their now and again (intermittent)? If its intermittent, the patching and the glasses (of any prescription) can help improve the vision and therefore stimulate the binocular vision which can in some cases keep they eyes "straighter".

Hope that made some sense confused

isittheweekendyet Sun 04-Mar-12 20:18:28

Hi...still loving this thread.

I posted back last year about the progress dd was making with her squint, long-sightedness and astigmatism. She was being patched for 3 hours a day then, and following her most recent appointment with the orthoptist, this has been reduced to just 30 mins a day grin

To all of you struggling with keeping the patch on your little ones, please stick with it. The results are incredible, and it does get easier. We found that a poster from the clinic where she could stick her patches after she'd worn them was the most effective tool - the excitement at seeing the princesses 'dress' appear as she added more patches was really useful as getting her to wear them, but actually after a while it becomes a daily regime anyway that she does without being asked now.

Good luck all

cheekyginger Sun 04-Mar-12 20:48:25

Thanks for that isit,

Nice to know those posters actually help!!! grin

bsue Sun 04-Mar-12 21:10:32

Hi Cheeky Ginger, Many thanks to you and your DH for the helpful response. We were told that DS will always need to wear glasses or contacts so its good to hear thinning will help with magnification.
Like most 5yr old boys he likes contact games such as football and has been asking to try karate. We dont want him to miss out but obviously want to keep him safe.
With others here talking about squints and patching I did just wonder if this was something we will need to face, but from what you say, maybe not.
Again, many thanks for you help.

SmileItsSunny Thu 08-Mar-12 08:11:45

Hi cheeky ginger thankyou again. No I don't think DD's vision was too bad so we won't push it! It's an intermittent squint; glad to hear the glasses will help. Although she does tend to peer over them rather. Thank you!

NeedsInspirationFor2012Name Thu 08-Mar-12 23:28:37

Hi Cheekyginger

I noticed that my DD (4) was squinting (right eye turns in) when she was poorly with a temp/ ?viral infection a couple of weeks ago. Put it down to being poorly and tired.

However since then I have noticed it on a number of occasions - probably most days - and a friend noticed today too. It is quite obvious and she literally goes 'cross eyed' but just in her right eye.

I had never noticed before the illness. Could it be something to do with this or a coincidence?

I have made an appt with my GP next week to get her checked out and referred if necessary.

Also if it is needing treatment would this most likely be glasses in the first instance? or a patch? or both?

Thanks in advance.

ToffeeWhirl Fri 09-Mar-12 13:48:49

My 6-year-old son complained of double vision this morning. He goes to the optician regularly to have his eyes checked (with his older brother, who needs glasses for an astigmatism) and his eyes have always been fine. Should I take him back to the optician or go to the doctor? I'm worrying a little about what it might be. I will check again with him when I collect him from school, hoping that the double vision has gone and it was just an blurry, waking-up thing.

cheekyginger Fri 09-Mar-12 21:32:55

Hi NeedsInspiration,

The virus/illness is purely coincidental. If a child is unwell it can allow these things to become apparent. It would have presented itself in the future.

When you go to your GP. From what you have described about the onset of your DD's squint the GP might panic and get you an emergency appointment at your local eye clinic. Squints generally present around the age of 2-3, so your DD is slightly older. Also the fact that you seemed to notice it suddenly. Some squints tend to be noticed gradually for a few months before parent do anything about it. But dont panic i have seen plenty of squints persent this way.

Is there family history of squints, glasses or patching?
It is likely that your DD will require a glasses assessment and may be longsighted. If she is longsighted then i would recommend that she is in her glasses asap. You could speed this up and in the meantime go to your local optometrist and get her eyes tested. Tell the optometrist you are due to see your GP but wanted an assessment in the meantime. They may even be able to refer you and save you going to your GP (I dont have anything against GP's but they wont be able to do much more than a very very basic assessment and their referal will be based purely on your history).
It is unlikely your DD would need patching unless her vision is reduced in her right eye. Patching is only used when the vision is lazy in one eye. If the squint happened recently then fingers crossed her vision should be affected to much if at all.

Sorry for the massive post! smile

cheekyginger Fri 09-Mar-12 22:04:22

Hi ToffeeWhirl,

If someone has double vision then it generally means their eyes are not pointing in the same direction i.e they have a squint.

Can you see anything funny about his eye when he is complaining of double vision? How long did it last for? Have his teachers mentioned it? I have to say some kids complain about these things and their is absolutely nothing to worry about.

Try not to ask too much about it. As these things can snowball if you question kids too much or too often. Just see what he says over the next few days. If he still mentions it now and again, I recommend that you take him back to the optician and get him assessed just to see if anything has changed.

But saying that, any persistent double vision associated with a headache/nausea should be seen by the GP immediately.

ToffeeWhirl Sat 10-Mar-12 03:14:02

Thanks, Cheeky. He came out of school complaining that his right eye had been hurting all day and felt as if he had something in it. However, it's not red or weepy and he can keep it open confused. I asked him about his double vision, but he didn't seem troubled. He was perfectly all right for the rest of the day and didn't mention it again. I can see what you mean about not making too much of it. He doesn't have any sign of a squint.

I had a scratch on my eye a week or so ago and had to go to the minor injuries dept at the local hospital - I wonder now if DS is copying. I had all the symptoms he is describing.

Thanks again.

hiviolet Sat 10-Mar-12 17:43:32

I'm glad I've seen this thread! My daughter (six months old next week) has had wonky eyes since birth, and hasn't grown out of it yet. Not sure whether she should have by now. Initially, I would have said her right eye turned inwards more than the left, but now it's most definitely her left eye that's most affected. Sometimes it's more pronounced than others, but I notice it all the time and in photos etc.

I had a squint as a child, requiring patches, and now as an adult I have fairly crap vision - high astigmatism, long sight. I was premature though, so I would be inclined to blame it on that rather than there being a hereditary aspect to it. My husband and all of his family, on the other hand, are all badly short sighted!

Mentioned it to the HV, expecting to be told it was nothing to worry about at her age, but said it was worth getting a referral considering family history. First GP I saw said I needed to take her to an optician, and if they believed there was a problem, she would refer. I was a bit dubious about this, and sure enough two high st opticians looked at me like I was bad when I asked if they could test a baby hmm

Took her to another GP who agreed there was "a lag" and would do a referral. Waiting to hear back now. So my question is, how common is this in a nearly six month old, and what the course of action would be if a problem is detected?

hiviolet Sat 10-Mar-12 17:44:52

*looked at me like I was mad, stupid phone.

NeedsInspirationFor2012Name Sat 10-Mar-12 23:49:21

Thanks so much Cheeky for such a comprehensive response.

There is a family history of lazy eye - my sister had one around 3yrs old. Also my sister and DD's dad both have astigmatism.

DD was born prem with an extremely low birth weight and I understand that this can also be a 'risk' factor in developing a squint.

I am not like to be able to get her to an optometrist before the GP appt next Fri but will try to do so.

Re the GP may panic re sudden onset and the fact she is 4yr, is this because sudden onset could be an indication of something more sinister? - Promise I am not panicking grin

Thanks again

NeedsInspirationFor2012Name Sat 10-Mar-12 23:50:29

Oh and she has been complaining that her eyes are hurting this week. She has however overheard me mention about her eyes to my mum.

Would a squint make her eyes sore?/tired?

NeedsInspirationFor2012Name Sun 11-Mar-12 00:03:50

Oooooooooooookay so I googled sudden onset estropia and now I'm panicking a little sad would I be mad to take her to Out of Hours GP tomorrow?

cheekyginger Wed 14-Mar-12 21:55:42

Hi NeedsInspiration

Sorry I've not been on here since your last post. Have you been to the GP?

If you havent DONT PANIC you would be much better to take her to an optometrist. If she is longsighted then there is really no need to worry. TBH a GP would prob panic too, unless they have some experience with eyes.

cheekyginger Wed 14-Mar-12 22:13:25

Hi hiviolet,

When babies are born their eyes are really uncoordinated. Over the first 3-6 months this improves dramatically. Any squint that persists after the age of 6 months should be referred for further assessment.
Not many optometrists would be happy to assess a baby of that age!!!

Once referred she would be assessed by an orthoptist to see if she has a true squint or a pseudosquint (optical illusion caused by the bridge of the nose). If a true squint is suspected then she would be seen by an ophthalmologist (eye dr) and have the health of her eyes checked and a glasses assessment.

Let me know how the referral goes smile

NeedsInspirationFor2012Name Wed 14-Mar-12 22:25:58

Thanks Cheeky I have PM'd you smile Optician appt booked for Fri and then GP appt after to get a referral.

onesandwichshort Thu 15-Mar-12 18:34:26

Cheekyginger - this is a fantastic thread, and really useful - I only wish it had been around a couple of years ago when DD's squint started.

Our story is that she suddenly developed a very severe squint at about 18 months or so (although with hindsight, it is visible in pictures before then). She has had two operations to reposition the muscles, and now wears glasses for slight longsightedness. She still has no 3d vision two years on.

Now her left eye is starting to drift up (was inwards before) although the opthalmist (? at the hospital anyway) didn't seem that bothered. Is this something which would be just corrected by a new specs prescription? or what?

Also, is there any mileage in eye exercises? It seems to a non-optician (i.e. me) that she has very weak eye muscles and so that this might strengthen them. Or is this too simplistic? She also has low muscle strength elsewhere and v slight hypermobility, so I don't think it's just her eyes. And if we do want to try eye exercises (I have an adult friend who swore that this was what sorted out her squint), who do we go to? I'd like to have a go, as it can't hurt and might help.

hiviolet Thu 15-Mar-12 20:37:35

Thanks so much for your reply Cheeky, will update when we get a referral smile

Casualty Fri 16-Mar-12 16:05:03

Hello cheekyginger - thanks for starting this thread, glad I found it, wonder if you could help me understand something? The school nurse phoned me this afternoon to tell me my DS (5) has failed both sight and hearing screening tests sad Totally taking me by surprise on both accounts. She spoke over the phone and I didn't really understand what she was saying, but she said he'd bring a letter home today with explanations and to be honest I'm none the wiser!

The results say 3 metres/0.2 for both eyes. I'll be taking him to see the opticians but just would like to know in the meantime that this is not serious (hopefully!) tia

April19 Sat 17-Mar-12 14:45:37

Hi Cheekyginger,

Thanks for answering our posts. Here is a question or two for you which I hope you don't mind answering. I have twins and one twin's eyes often turn in at different times and the other twin's left eye is a tiny bit turned in, maybe not at all. I am longsighted myself from early childhood. Basically, they are only 3 months old and I'm gutted that they've inherited my bad genes. Anyway, if and when they do have to get glasses, is it possible to have the lenses thinned? Its just that I see kids with glasses and the lenses are often so thick sometimes and I wonder maybe that their lenses can't be thinned for some reason. Also, my friend's daughter got glases last year (aged 2) and the prescription is quite strong and each time they go to the optician, they hope her prescription will be reduced, why would they put a strong prescription on her if she may not need this and reduce it rather than starting low and adding to it? Thank you.

cheekyginger Sun 18-Mar-12 20:49:29

Happy Mothers Day Everyone!!!

Hi onesandwich,

If your DD doesnt have 3D vision then exercises unfortunately wont work. To exercise the eye muscles and the control of the eyes, the eyes have to work together.
We would prescribe exercises to help control intermittent squints and strengthen binocular vision. This is generally given to older children and adults. But exercises are purely for horizontal squints. From what you describe your LO has a vertical squint. The ophthalmologist will likely just monitor this. If it was to worsen then surgery on that muscle could be carried out.

So unfortunately i dont think exercises would help....All you can really do at the moment is make sure her glasses are kept up to date and wait......

cheekyginger Sun 18-Mar-12 21:02:59

Hi casualty,

That Vision equates to 6/9.5

20/20 is the US measurement for perfect vision. 6/6 is the UK equivalent.

So in normal language, his vision is slightly reduced in each eye. Certainly nothing to worry about too much smile. Your optician will be able to give you a lot more information once your son has had the glasses assessment.

cheekyginger Sun 18-Mar-12 21:20:55

Hi April19,

There is no reason why you cant get the lenses thinned down. But the problem is the cost. The standard frames and lenses are generally free on the NHS but you have to pay an additional charge for the thinner lenses. This will vary form shop to shop. So i would recommend that you shop around if and when that time comes.
But remember children's glasses are broken regularly and therefore you will have to pay for the thinner lenses every time shock.

As for your friends child. I think they might have got the wrong end of the stick! When a child has a refraction (glasses check) the optician/eye dr get a reading from the eye, and then glasses are prescribed based on this reading. This reading will change as the the child grows. But the prescription can go up or down....

If you are still seeing your two squinting by the time they are 4 months. Mention this to your health visitor and get referred to your nearest eye clinic. That way you will be in the system so that glasses can be given as soon as required.

NeedsInspirationFor2012Name Sun 18-Mar-12 22:14:52

Cheekyginger - sorry not updated. Took DD to optician on Fri and he diagnosed a squint and her vision was

R eye 6/15 and L 6/11

They have referred her urgently to hospital orthoptist and we will apparently be seen within 2 weeks.

thanks for all your info x

Casualty Mon 19-Mar-12 12:51:26

Thanks so much cheekyginger, you've helped put my mind at ease smile. He's got a test booked in a couple of days so will know more then.

cartblanche Mon 19-Mar-12 13:01:41

Hi there - my daughter has an intermittent squint in her left eye. She was referred to the eye hospital at age 3.5 and goes every 3 months for a check up (she's 4.5 now) She was prescribed glasses for a slight long-sightedness in the left eye but it was very slight and they seem pleased that there is not much disparity in vision between the 2 eyes and that it has slightly improved over the months.

They don't feel the need to operate as it is intermittent and patching isn't appropriate because the vision is only slightly weaker in the squinty eye. Her squint can be quite pronounced especially when she is tired and we notice it in particular at the dinner table when she is sitting directly opposite us. She often peaks over the top of the glasses too and we see her squint when she does this.

I am slightly concerned that we are being asked to live with it. Are there no exercises she can do? Is this type of squint one that would respond to such exercises? Be interested to hear your response if you get a chance!

cheekyginger Mon 19-Mar-12 16:11:44

Hi cartblanche

Is it a convergent (turns in) or divergent squint (turns out)?

Tgger Tue 20-Mar-12 12:25:49

Ok I'm back. Just ordered DS his first pair of glasses. They are quite strong, prescription 5.5 or something (sorry, it's at the optician's!). He is long sighted and has a squint (and lazy eye). We have to go back in 3 months to see if a patch will help too- it probably will- I think the 3 months are to get used to the glasses.

I'm feeling a bit miffed as it seems "they are quite strong glasses"- not sure why this wasn't what I was expecting- at previous test it was mentioned he might not need glasses at all just a patch when clearly at this test it has gone the other way and warned that the glasses might take a bit of getting used to due to strength.

Ah well, DS (5.4) was very pleased to be getting glasses so at least he's happy!

Tgger Tue 20-Mar-12 12:27:36

Ah yes, just saw a thing about thinning lenses on pp. We were offered this for DS but I declined as I thought if we thin them now (£10) we'll have to thin them every time and this could get expensive, whereas if he gets used to the thick ones which I think he won't be bothered about (more adults are?) then cheaper!

Seona1973 Tue 20-Mar-12 13:00:38

our optician thins for free (the previous one we had charged for it - part of the reason we moved!).

tigrou Wed 21-Mar-12 09:36:28

What a wonderful thread.
Cheeky Ginger, I have two questions for you - first, do you think these symptoms could indicate that my dd has a convergence insufficiency? - she is 6 and learning to read well enough but "abnormally slow" according to the teacher, not just in her reading but in all pen and paper tasks like writing and maths too, she doesn't complain of headaches but she always complains of tiredness, she yawns and rubs her eyes a lot while reading, sometimes reads words backwards when tired or sees letters that aren't actually in the word, and has enormous difficulty keeping her attention focused on the page, but her comprehension is clearly fine and congnitively she is assimilating everything she should be.
- second - if not CI, are there any other sight-related problems that could be affecting her? Her distance vision seems fine. Is there anything I should emphasize in particular when we see the ophtalmologist next week, to make sure his evaluations includes all possibilities?
Thanks so much!

ArcticLemming Wed 21-Mar-12 11:54:56

Hi CheekyGinger. Thanks so much for this thread.
My DD was under the orthoptist until the age of 2 for a possible squint - we have a very strong family history. They thought it was a pseudo-squint - I was never convinced as had a number of photos where the light reflection was very unequally reflected in her eyes, which I thought indicated it was a "true" squint. However, she seemed to stop squinting. She sees an optician regularly as she is marginally long sighted, and at the last visit he said she had mild / borderline convergence insufficiency. He suggested I did the "pencil pushup" exercise with her. When I bring the pencil close to her eyes in this exercise , one eye turns in more than the other. Is this normal?

I also think she's getting some symptoms from the CI. She reads well, but when tired misreads or misses out small words while still reading longer more complex words well. She also seems to mix up letters from adjacent words, again when tired or she's been reading a while.

Should I get another referral for her?
Thanks very much.

issimma Wed 21-Mar-12 12:01:28

Can I jump aboard?
Dd is 14mo. DH and I both have astigmatism and have worn glasses since childhood (he's ls, I'm ss).
Two strangers have commented on dd's 'squint', but the hv thinks it's a pseudo one. The bridge of dd's nose is very flat. She said to keep an eye on it (!), and I'm sure dd's eyes are not always in the same place as each other.

Who should I contact? Hv/GP/optician?


Tgger Wed 21-Mar-12 19:53:37

Sorry, back again. DS seems to be getting headaches for the first time ever. He is also reading a lot more. Do you think the two are connected and should it improve once he's got his glasses? Of course it could be the headaches are unrelated and he is a bit peeky, just he's never had headaches before...

playnicely Wed 21-Mar-12 21:05:30

cheekyginger - sorry just got back to this - my daughter's intermittent squint is convergent.

Does this make a difference in relation to eye exercises?

cheekyginger Wed 21-Mar-12 21:30:26

Hi Tggr,

Wait and see if the glasses make a difference to his headaches. Glad he is looking forward to getting them!!!
God luck with the glasses grin

You are quite right about the thinning. It is purely for the way they look....they dont perform any better than standard lenses. A +5 lens will look fine

cheekyginger Wed 21-Mar-12 21:38:08

Hi tigrou,

It may be a CI as you say. As long as her convergence is assessed then this will diagnose a CI.
The only other suggestion may be coloured overlays. Some children find a benefit when reading with an coloured filter over the text. The scientific evidence for this is a bit of a grey area so some ophthalmologists don't support it.
Good luck at your appointment smile

cheekyginger Wed 21-Mar-12 21:44:33

Hi ArcticL,

Reading problems are tricky to diagnose.

Any problems like convergence insf etc have to be treated first before going down the road of other things like coloured overlays etc (mentioned in my PP).

Does you LO had almond shaped eyes and/or a wide bridge to her nose? This may make it look as though one eye is turning in too much. With a conv insf i would expect the eye to want to drift outwards, as that is what you are trying to prevent.

A teacher also told me recently that larger words that conjure up images are easier to remember (vehicle, elephant etc), whereas words that have no images are harder to learn (but the and).....had never thought of it like that before confused!

cheekyginger Wed 21-Mar-12 21:48:30

Hi issimma,

You should be able to get referred through any of these routes.

The one benefit of the optician is your LO can get the glasses check carried out prior to referral which means you will know if glasses will be needed.

Some hospitals have a 3 months waiting time. So if you go to the optician first you can get the ball

cheekyginger Wed 21-Mar-12 21:59:29

Hi playnicely are you a.k.a cartblanche (im easily confusedconfused)

The type of squint does matter as divergent squints are much easier to treat with exercises!

However, there are ways of improving the negative vergence of the eyes. Which is the fancy way of saying....being able to pull your eyes outwards (small amounts). There is a technique known as bar reading. But your LO has to be able to read before this will take effect.

Have you been told her diagnosis? Have you ever been told if she is a convergence excess esotropia or full accommodative esotropia? If you start to see the squint happening more and more often then i would suggest that she may need some intervention, as you don't want her to lose her binocular vision. But don't panic these things don't happen overnight. It would just be nice to know what they have in mind for her future treatment plan...

playnicely Wed 21-Mar-12 22:42:43

Yes cheekyginger I namechanged for a weightloss thread blush! Sorry for the confusion!

I haven't been told the exact diagnosis. Am sure I could phone and ask if she is a convergence excess estropia or full accommodative estropia. I don't think the frequency in squinting is increasing. I always ask what the long term goal is and I get such woolly answers. They seem to be quite encouraged by her progress - the next visit in June will be with the orthoptist and the optician to check her prescription. If I find out anything before that I shall report back.

MrsPort Thu 22-Mar-12 20:44:13

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

cheekyginger Fri 23-Mar-12 21:50:31

Hi playnicely,

If your Lo has 3D vision, then the goal is to preserve/encourage the 3D vision. If the orthoptist is worth their salt they should be able to give you a clearer picture of whats going on. If you live in dundee then that might be me...when im back at work!!! grin

cheekyginger Fri 23-Mar-12 21:56:19

Hi MrsPort,

Sorry to hear about your LO's vision. He has had his fair share of rare eye problems. Poor wee soul sad. Can they doing anything about the retinal pucker?

playnicely Fri 23-Mar-12 22:11:50

Hi cheekyginger - so am in Scotland but the other coast from you! From what I can gather, she has 3D vision, her eyes are working well together - the last orthoptist kind of indicated I should be delighted and that the squint issue is an aesthetic thing. She does go squinty-eyed rather too often for my liking but am reassured that her vision isn't suffering unduly. Having said that I would prefer her to not have this laxity in her eye muscles and if there was anything that could be done to help I would be up for it (obviously not to the extent of operating unnecessarily!)

ladywithnomanors Fri 23-Mar-12 22:21:07

My DD who has just turned 4 years has suddenly started turning her left eye in. I first noticed this in January and went to my GP. I have an appointment at the hospital next week with a consultant.
What is the likely tests etc they will carry out? is she likely to have glasses? my real fear is that there is a neurological reason for this.

cheekyginger Fri 23-Mar-12 22:33:06

Hi playnicely,

That is good if they are pleased with everything. Just hard to watch your wee ones with a problem like that and not be able to fix it for them!
You could ask if exercises would help when she is older...and see what they say.

cheekyginger Fri 23-Mar-12 22:39:36

Hi ladywithnomanors,

They will carry out a glasses check, to see if she is longsighted. This can go undetected and suddenly present itself when a childs eye starts to squint. If you have uncorrecred longsight, the eye has to constantly over focus to see clearly. This over focussing, can in some cases cause the eye to overconverge

Do you have a family history of squint, glasses or patching?
Generally there is no reason to suspect a neurological problem in a squinting child. If you have a healthy child then the glasses check is the first thing to be done. smile

Woodlands Fri 23-Mar-12 22:57:19

ooh what a useful thread!

I have been wondering if I should get my DS's eyes checked and I wonder what you think? He is 20 months. I wore glasses from a very early age (about 2.5) and am short sighted and astigmatic, and because of this family history the HV has said he will be referred to the orthoptist at his 2-2.5 year check, but if I have any worries to come back and they will refer sooner. I haven't had any particular concerns about his sight myself but nursery mentioned that they wondered if he was short-sighted because he kept crashing into things. I think it's likely to be that he is/was just learning to run/walk rather than an eyesight problem, but then they are dealing with toddlers every day so they know what is normal.

Do you think I should ask the HV to refer us to the orthoptist now? Or should I perhaps take him to a high street optician for a check, since I'm not worried about a squint or anything? Or should I not worry for now?

cheekyginger Sat 24-Mar-12 20:47:17

Hi woodlands,

As you say its probably more to do with him learning to walk/run. However you might as well get the ball rolling and get referred. Some departments have a 3 month waiting list if it's not an urgent problem.
He is still quite young so i wouldnt advise going to an optician just now, you would be better waiting a little bit longer and get seen by an orthoptist. No point putting the wee man through unnecessary eye drops! smile

Woodlands Sat 24-Mar-12 22:28:22

Thanks Cheeky! I will talk to the HV and see what she says (hate phoning people so keep meaning to go to a clinic at some point).

Hi cheekyginger, you posted on my other thread about whether I could take my nearly 3 year old DS to the optician to get his excessive blinking investigated. Well, we went today and the optician said he thought his sight was fine and that the blinking was just a habit.

DS co-operated well with the sight tests (was able to understand what was required of him), but I'm wondering what tests an orthoptist would do in a referral that would be different? If the blinking doesn't resolve itself in a month or so, I'm planning to try to get him a referral for further investigation. The optician today told us there was a 3 month wait, but do you know if that would be quicker going private? We have BUPA cover, but I'm not sure whether a private route exists for this kind of thing or not.

Just wondering whether I should start the ball rolling now for a referral and then cancel it if he gets better (if it really will take 3 months), or if I should wait for a bit and see whether it goes away on its own.

I've tried asking my HV, but she's not calling back (impossible to get to see her), so I'd be grateful for any light you can shed on things.

Thanks smile

cheekyginger Mon 26-Mar-12 21:27:48

Hi Doolally,

An orthoptist would investigate the binocular vision more than what the optician would.
However excessive blinking in itself generally doesn't indicate a vision problem, unless its associated with eye rubbing or complaining of sore eyes etc. If his eyes are red then this could be a sign of hay fever...?

The fact that the optician was happy with everything i would tend to hold off getting a referral. If it persists after a few months then get him referred, otherwise just try not to mention it in front of him. smile

Thanks cheekyginger. His eyes aren't red or sore, it is just blinking. We're trying to ignore it, but sometimes I've been asking him if his eyes hurt which would draw attention to it I suppose. I'll try harder to ignore now I'm happier that his vision is ok smile

Tgger Tue 27-Mar-12 19:33:05

Hello again!
DS got his first glasses today. So far he says everything is big and blurry, and when he read his story to us at bedtime it had to be very close for him to be able to see well enough to read. His prescription is quite strong in one eye- he's longsighted (also with a squint) and it's something like 5.5, and milder, 1 or so in the other. Will it just take him some time to adjust to the glasses? Also, what is the best advice, to insist/give him the message that he must wear the glasses all the time right away, or to let him wear them just for some of the day to start with? Should I warn his teacher that he may not be able to see so well with them on for a while?! Thanks so much for your help.

Tgger Tue 27-Mar-12 19:33:25

Forgot to say he is 5.

cheekyginger Wed 28-Mar-12 21:34:45

Hi Tggr,

Aim to have him wearing them full time by next tues (i.e a week). Gradually try and increase how much he is wearing them each day. It will take his brain a while to realise that if he just relaxes his eyes and lets the glasses do their job, he will see better! They often find their vision blurry at first with the glasses. This just takes a wee while for them to adjust. Unfortunately i cant tell you how long this will take as all children are different.

Just plain old bribery might be your best option. By the end of the week if he is wearing them then he can get a toy or a cool day out somewhere.

As for school. Just let them know it will take a wee while for him to adjust but that he should manage fine with any visual tasks that they will be getting a 5 year old to do. All there text etc is a good size. Just encourage the teachers to get them on him all day at school, as there will be plenty of distractions.

Good luck smile

MeanMom Wed 28-Mar-12 23:23:32

Dont know if this is your field but my daughter has bilateral cataracts caused by her T1 diabetes. Her unaided vision has been assessed as right eye 6/36,n12 difficult, left eye 6/60, n12 odd words.

Does this mean she could be classed as VI ? I believe technically your are only VI if it cannot be corrected (and cataracts can be removed) but whilst we are waiting can I expect help from her school as if she were permanently VI?

I ask because so far they are not doing the things they have asked to do by the local Vision Support advisory teacher.

Sorry if asking something outside your area but have a meeting at school Friday and don't yet understand the assessment.

CalicoCathy Thu 29-Mar-12 09:22:05

Thank you so much OP for this post smile

I wanted to ask about (prescription) sunglasses, hope this is an appropriate place.

DD, 4yo, has worn glasses full time since she was 2. I think her prescription is +3 in each eye, she also has an astigmatism which the glasses are trying to correct

I was wondering whether it would be advisable to get her sunglasses for when the sun is bright? Does she need sunglasses more than children with good vision, to protect her eyes? She is very good about always wearing a hat in the sun, but I worry it isn't enough.

We don't live in the UK and the sun is brighter here, and we are frequently beside water too. There is no way she could just wear standard kiddy sunglasses, she'd need prescription ones, but I've been told that our insurance might not cover the cost.

There's a 3 month wait before we can get an appointment with her eye specialist to discuss it. I'm wondering if I should just take her existing prescription to a shop and get her some sunglasses. Or am I just being paranoid, and a hat is enough?

Seona1973 Thu 29-Mar-12 09:39:27

we just got the optician to make up prescription sunglasses using dd's existing prescription for her glasses. We had to pay extra for them. We used them for when we were abroad on holiday

Tgger Thu 29-Mar-12 11:29:38

Thanks cheekyginger! As it's end of term on Friday and he had a big wobble about wearing them to school we've decided he wears them after school at the moment and then full time in the Easter holidays and full time at school after the hols. Think this was a good compromise. Hopefully by the end of the Easter hols he will have got so used to them it won't be a problem wearing them to school. He agreed on this compromise anyway!- and if he kicks up any more fuss after the hols (hopefully not) then bribery all the way I think!
Thanks again.

Also to previous person on sunglasses, we were really lucky and specsavers were doing a promotion on prescription sunglasses making them free for DS, so we've ordered sunglasses to pick up next week too- you could check out any promos in your area?

cheekyginger Sun 01-Apr-12 15:19:55

Hi CalicoCathy,

Prescription sunglasses can make kids feel more comfortable in the sun. But she does not need them more than children that do not wear glasses.

She could wear just cheapy kiddy sunglasses for short spells in the meantime. But i would just take her prescription to your local optician and get her prescription sunglasses made up.

But saying all that a hat will suffice!!!smile

Dunnein Sun 01-Apr-12 17:56:50

Hi, my DS has just turned 5 and had his eye test done at school. The nurse referred him to the Orthoptist at the hospital who did some tests and managed to get us an urgent glasses test done with the drops in at a local opticians. Not knowing much about eye tests and all that goes with it as neither I or my Husband wear glasses I didn't really know what to expect. She looked visibly shocked when I said that I hadn't noticed anything untoward as the prescription she gave him was +7 and +8. I am feeling really bad as apparently that is really bad but he is doing really well at school, in the top 5% in his class, has never struggled with reading, writing, lego or anything like that. How can Neither my husband or I, his teachers or nursery nurses not have not noticed it if it's that bad? Is there any chance it could be wrong?

CalicoCathy Sun 01-Apr-12 20:32:23

Thanks! I'll try the normal kiddy sunglasses for short spells then, see how she gets on, and start saving for the prescription ones for our summer holiday.

Glad to know the hat will suffice though!

Tgger Mon 02-Apr-12 20:51:09

Dunnein- am sure cheeky ginger will be on soon, but I wanted to say I had a similar feeling when first discovered that DS needed glasses-sort of denial almost!- he's had them a week now. He's 5 as well, and one eye was quite bad, 5.5/6 I think, so not as bad as your son but "a strong prescription" as the eye doc said. We had also not noticed anything with him and he is also super bright with reading and writing etc. He is adjusting to his glasses now pretty well. Tonight when he took them off to get in the bath he mentioned that he couldn't see a couple of times grin. I think if they are used to bad eye sight that's just how the world is to them, they haven't known any different!!

Anyway, I came back on here to say thanks any to Cheekyginger and to say that DS is happily wearing his glasses full time now. He was a little reluctant at first, partly because he didn't want people drawing attention to him etc, but he went to a holiday science camp today and wore them all day with no probs at all. Hooray!

cheekyginger Tue 03-Apr-12 15:50:44

Hi Dunnein,

Tggr pretty much hit the nail on the head. Kids get used to whatever they have so children dont know they cant see as well as other kids OR that their eyes are working extra hard to see what other kids see! The glasses check with the drops is really accurate therefore its unlikely to be wrong im afraid.

I wish professionals would think before they open their mouths to parents angry!!!!! We have enough to worry about and feel guilty about. Thats the whole point of vision pick up the kids that parents dont notice any problems with! Unless your child has a visible squint or you have a degree in orthoptics please dont feel any guilt over it!

Hey Tggr, weel done your wee dude!! smile

NK1cecbd77X126aa8ff01d Tue 03-Apr-12 19:29:29

This looks like a great thread- I am trying to find a way of passing on my daughter's frames, and hope Cheekyginger doesn't mind me coming on here as there seems to be a wide audience.... She is now 5 and has worn glasses since she was 2. Her prescription has moved every few months, and so I know how expensive it all is...I know there are ways to donate them overseas- but would rather give them to someone here as I think there are plenty of people that would still make good use of them. Currently I have a cute pair of Lindbergs in light pink suitable for a 2/3 year old (brilliant frames as they are so hard to break, and look feminine and understated)...and a few other pairs too. If anyone is interested pls email, as every time I see them sitting in a drawer I feel guilty they are not being made use of!

cheekyginger Tue 03-Apr-12 20:07:29

no probs NK....great idea wine!

But remember if you don't get any takers send them overseas to the poor wee kids that need glasses that dont have the luxury of the NHS thanks!

cbarb Tue 03-Apr-12 20:12:51

Don't worry, will do.

CanCant Mon 09-Apr-12 00:55:32

Please may I ask a question on this wonderful thread?

My DS has just turned 3, and we have suspected for a while that there is a problem with his eyesight. He is incredibly shy and wary of strangers, and it has taken several months to get him seen at the paediatric eye department, but it has been confirmed that he is long sighted.
Severely long-sighted.

He has been given a 75% prescription initially- 6.5 and 7.5... full prescription would be 8 and 9 we were told. sad

He has to wear his specs the whole time from now on.

May I ask what his prospects are?

Will he need specs his whole life? We were told that if he wears them all the time, then by the time his eyes finish growing around 7yo they should have developed as well as can be hoped, and his vision would be 20/20 (well, 6/6) - did the consultant mean with spectacles on?
We were a little overwhelmed to take much in, and DS had had a very long day, and was starting to fidget.

How much do you think he can see now/has been able to see up til now with no correction? Feeling very sad about this atm, particularly as it seems my other child also needs specs now too...

Thanks in advance for any advice you can offer smile

BirdyBedtime Tue 10-Apr-12 13:40:37

Hi there cheekyginger. I'm back again!

Just wondered what your views are on the research published last week by Glasgow Caledonian about the video game technique? Obviously I'm very interested having had a poor response from DD with patching and them suggesting that they could get results with older children.

DS is now getting on fine with his glasses (apart from the fact we are now on the 3rd pair - first ones leg broke off when he fell after having them for 8 days, second pair were mangled beyond repair at nursery although we have no idea what actually happened). Don't want to hijack but does anyone have any tips to stop a very rough and tumble 3 year old from destroying glasses? It's not the cost as obviously they get repaired/replaced for free, it's the constant trips to the optician - as DD wears glasses too one week we were there 3 times to get frames adjusted!!

Hope your LO has good settling in visits at nursery.

BirdyBedtime Tue 10-Apr-12 13:47:16

CanCant - sorry meant to reply to you too (just until cheeky can come along with her advice).

This sounds very like our experience with DS (also 3) who was diagnosed about 2 months ago with +7 and +7.5 lenses and a slight lazy eye. We were shocked (even though we've been through it with DD) as I couldn't understand how he could have seen anything! Apparently it's to do with how long-sightedness works - because images can't physically converge behind the lens, the eyes just have to work extra hard to get them to focus on the lens (unlike in short-sightedness where they can converge in front of the lens). So they can see, just have to work damn hard to do so.

Unfortunately we've been told he'll need glasses for life (although he might only have to wear them for reading etc when older), as this level of long-sightedness might reduce, but won't go away altogether as his eyes grow. So it's likely your DS will gain 20/20 with the glasses on, but again he might not need to wear them all of the time.

Don't worry about both your DCs having glasses, all four of us wear them so apart from the frequent visits to the optician/orthoptist etc, it's just a family thing!

CanCant Tue 10-Apr-12 21:13:34

Thank you for your lovely post birdy (lovely name btw!) smile

I was rather stressed the other day, it was very kind of you.
My DD (6.2) was also diagnosed long-sighted over Easter, and is 4.5 and 2.75, so they will both be getting their spectacles on the same day, later this week... they are both quite excited about it tbh.

Reading your story about mangled specs makes me thankful we have an opticians at the end of our road grin

I think I'm most upset that a) my perfect children aren't quite perfect (irrational and ridiculous I know) and b) how on earth could we not have picked up this before now?

I am a little sad that DD only has a year before her eyes are fully grown and so not long to try and help them IYSWIM. DS will never remember not wearing specs, I'm sure, and he has ages whilst his eyes are developing to have treatment with specs, but she doesn't.

I am very thankful that it is something that can be helped by corrective lenses though obviously smile I appreciate there are many many worse conditions my children could be suffering with.

BirdyBedtime Wed 11-Apr-12 09:55:43

Glad to have been able to give a little help.

I think the way you are feeling is totally normal - I felt so guilty and upset when DD was picked up at her P1 screening (she was 5.8) with virtually no vision in her weaker eye - there had been absolutely no sign at all of any problems. It is amazing how children cope.

I also didn't want her to have to wear glasses as I have such negative memories from childhood of being 'the specky one'. Things have so changed since then - a girl in DDs class at school was so desperate for glasses like DD that she even convinced the teacher that she was going to be getting them! To be honest I now think they both look a little strange without their glasses (as do I).

Saying all that I do think boys, particularly 3 yo ones, are just so rough and tumble that you have to be prepared to spend a lot of time at the end of the road ........

Anyway, hope all goes well at the opticians - I'm sure your DCs will look great and cope fine.

Madsometimes Wed 11-Apr-12 19:52:29

Hi Cheeky,
Can I ask a cheeky question about my own eyes? I had temporary loss of vision in one of my eyes in February (10 minutes, 2 episodes). Previously I have lost part of my vision in one eye for a few minutes, but have not taken a great deal of notice because I get migraine with aura.

I am at high risk for stroke (mech heart valve, flutter), so was assessed by a neurologist, who felt that it was not a TIA, because I have had periods of vision loss going back 20 years. She has referred me to an neuro-opthamologist. What kind of tests can I expect to be done? Will I get my pupils dilated or have an eye angiogram. <Scared of needles and going yellow>.

cheekyginger Wed 11-Apr-12 22:04:31

Hi Canccant,
Think Birdy has given you lots of useful information especially from a mums point of view!

The only thing i can add is that your LO should be able to achieve 6/6 vision with the glasses. And these things often go unnoticed by the parents and thats why vision screening is soooo important.

You obviously are sensible about the whole thing but your child getting glasses for the first thing is a big shock... But at least both of your LO's are getting them at the same noone is being left out!!

Hi Madsometimes,
It sounds a bit like Amaurosis fugax. Not sure about other depts but as far as I am aware our dr's would just have a thorough look at the retina. Therefore you may need your pupils dilated. However, they would only need to do the angiogram if there was an actual blockage there and then. Good luck at your appointment smile

Madsometimes Thu 12-Apr-12 07:54:20

Thanks for your reply Cheeky. My eyes have been behaving themselves since February, so hopefully nothing will be found. I had a check at my local optician because I thought three months was quite a while to wait and I didn't want eye doctor to lecture me for not having regular sight checks. All was fine there smile.

thomsonf Sun 15-Apr-12 10:49:17

Hi Cheeky. Thank you so much for this thread. I have read it through but have my own question to add. We have intermittently noticed that DD, who will be 4 at the end of this month, appears to have a squint. It is only when she looks up and to the left and then her eyes don't seem to move to the same degree. Her left eye turns out more, or her right eye less I guess. Tbh, we have been aware of this for a while but I hadn't got it checked out. Our new nanny noticing it within the first few weeks made me realise it is becoming more prevalent. For background, she didn't seem to have this as a baby but at about 18 months old she had febrile convulsions and when she stopped fitting she had a constant pronounced squint for a few hours. When she woke a few hours later in the hospital it had gone. Could she have damaged her eyes through the convulsion?

We took her to the gp this week and have a referral to a paediatric ophthalmologist. I had assumed the squint was a cosmetic thing only but is it likely her vision is also affected? What should I expect from the appointment?

Thanks in advance.

cheekyginger Tue 17-Apr-12 21:51:51

Hi thomsonf,

Its tricky to diagnose from what you have written. But some children/adults have eye conditions that only affect their eyes in certain positions of gaze. Their is a condition known as Browns Syndrome (link to google images) that is a non-progressive condition that can cause a problem with upward gaze???

If its only present when she is looking up then it unlikely to affect her vision. However the eye Dr will likely carry out a glasses check as part of their routine assessment.

If you were getting referred to our eye clinic she would be seen by the orthoptist first to have a vision check and a thorough check of the eye movements and 3D vision. She would then get drops in her eyes to dilate her pupils so that the Dr can get a good look into the eye to check the health and carry out a glasses check.

Good luck at your appointment smile

candyflossy Wed 18-Apr-12 21:51:59

Hi Cheekyginger,
My 11 yr old dd had an eye test today and was told she is long sighted but won't be needing glasses. The optician said glasses will not make a difference to her and most children grow out of it and it's only a problem if there is a squint. Is the optician correct and does my dd need glasses? Thanks.

candyflossy Thu 19-Apr-12 09:18:12

Hi cheekyginger, just want to add that my dd's 0.75 in both eyes. Is this only slightly long sighted? Does she need glasses?

cheekyginger Thu 19-Apr-12 21:55:19

Hi candyfloss,

This is a really minimal prescription, therefore the optician is quite right not to prescribe it.

If your daughter was to start having headaches or sore eyes when reading then she may need to be checked again to ensure the prescription is not increasing. But this is unlikely. smile

candyflossy Fri 20-Apr-12 10:16:37

Thanks for your reply, Cheekyginger.

Another quick question. I know most young children do grow out of being long sighted as they get older, but my dd is already 11 yr old, will she improve as she gets older?

Thanks for your help.

londonlottie Sat 21-Apr-12 10:28:16

Not sure if this is the right thread but - hello smile

My DD (2.4) has had an ongoing 'issue' with her eyesight in that she often keeps one eye closed entirely. It almost always seems to be her left eye, it happens more in bright light, and otherwise her eyesight doesn't seem to be presenting her with any problems (eg. with her confidence to climb, move about, judge obstacles). We were living in Switzerland and last summer I took her to an opthalma-something (blush) who had a look at her and declared that the eyes appeared to be aligned and that the next step would be to put dye in to check eyesight, but that even if they thought she might need glasses they weren't really recommended for that age because they could cause headaches. Embarrassed to admit but then summer ended and we never went back, and moved back to the UK a few months ago. Summer on its way again and lo and behold, the problem is still there.

Does anyone have experience of similar symptoms and have any idea what it could be? It's next on my list of issues to sort out with her (current one being terrible chronic constipation, sigh) and I'm already feeling guilty at having left it last summer.

Thanks in advance.

cheekyginger Mon 23-Apr-12 22:16:20

Hi candyfloss,

As its such a small prescription the answer is yes for your DD. Anything higher than a +1.50 is likely to be a bit more permanent longterm.

cheekyginger Mon 23-Apr-12 22:20:51

Hi londonlottie,

Sounds really bizarre. My recommendation would be to get her checked at a local Optometrist (optician) practice. Might just be that she is light sensitive and a pair of sunglasses will help sort her out.
Sometimes the closing of an eye can indicate an intermittent divergent squint (the eye turns outwards at times).
But an optometrist would be able to do a basic eye exam etc and see if she needs referred on to an eye specialist. smile

Maybe some other mums will give you a different answer from their experience.

candyflossy Tue 24-Apr-12 17:20:36

Thanks for your reply, Cheeky. That's very reassuring to hear.

cheekyginger Wed 25-Apr-12 20:52:18

No probs smile

cheekyginger Mon 30-Apr-12 22:18:40

Just wanted to add a message to let you all know i am going back to work on friday sad. After a lovely year of maternity leave.

I intend to keep this thread running but my responses might not be that quick. Please feel free to post any questions about squints, lazy eyes and glasses for children OR adults.

Thanks for keeping it going thanks

hollie25 Tue 01-May-12 10:07:24

Hello Cheekyginger

It looks like you have been working through most of your maternity leave on here. It is very kind of you! You are obviously very passionate about your job so good for you!

My DD who 5 ½ has just been referred to an eye hospital as her right eye drifts slightly when looking at objects very close. I feel terrible for not noticing myself but my question would be is it too late at 5 to treat this and if not what will the likely treatment be. There is an 18 wk waiting list for an appointment and I just feel so useless – I have read about covering the strong eye to help the weaker one but the last thing I want to do is more harm than good.

Thank you

BirdyBedtime Tue 01-May-12 10:38:51

Good luck with going back to work and thanks for giving up some of your precious mat leave time to give such fab advice.

We are taking dd to Glasgow next week to see if she is suitable for the video game research - worth a try to see if we can improve her BV.

hollie25 Tue 01-May-12 12:22:31

Hello again I probably should have mentioned that her vision in fine and well within the normal range apparently. The drift happens when looking at something closer than normal reading distance.


PuffofSmoke Tue 01-May-12 12:27:14

Hello again, My DD (just turned 2) has been getting on great with her glasses for the last 6 months, she also wears a patch for an hour a day. All has been good until the last few weeks when she has started to squint with the glasses on, this has never happened before. Does this mean it is getting worse rather than better sad. We are back to the hospital at the beginning of June but just wondered your opinion. thanks

cheekyginger Wed 02-May-12 21:41:32

Hi Hollie25, wouldnt advise patching if her vision is normal. Patching is only used when the vision is lazy in one eye. 14 weeks is quite a long waiting time. You could take her to a local optician to have a glasses check. It may be that she is longsighted and getting her into glasses sooner rather than later is a good thing.
I find it odd that you've not noticed it (as parents are often the first to notice squints).....who was it that spotted it? Squints tend to get worse over time and generally present around the age of 2-3. Could it just be the shape of her eyes/eyelids that are making it appear that one eye is turning in?
As for treatment. It depends on what type of squint it is. But if she is longsighted then glasses would be the first step.

Hope that helps... smile

cheekyginger Wed 02-May-12 21:53:04

Hi PuffofSmoke,

Dont panic! It might just mean that the strength of her glasses need adjusted. The best thing to do would be to phone your orthoptic dept/eye clinic and explain to them what you are seeing. They will likely bring your appointment forward so that they can re-check the strength of the glasses. smile But if they cant bring the appointment forward thats ok too. Nothing drastic will happen in 4-5 weeks.

cheekyginger Wed 02-May-12 21:57:51

Hi Birdy,

Hope it goes well in glasgow. I was at a meeting that Anita (sure she wont mind me using her name as she was on TV the other week!!) was presenting at just the other month. Her research is really interesting.

Keep me posted if you can! grin

Thara Thu 03-May-12 00:53:29

Hi mums

Cheeky ginger, thank you so much for taking the time to answer everyone's queries.

Last week I took my daughter to the optician following a concern that she saw a flash a couple times. We found out that she is long sighted, has astigmatism and lazy eye. It was so shocking to hear and something we had to accept. Myself and my husband are shortsighted, not long sighted. Could long sighted ness come out of the blue for young children even though the parents don't have the condition? Or could it indicate other health problems?

My daughter's prescription is as below:

Right dust. 6/15. +2.50/-2.50 x 10 6/15
Left dist 6/15. +2.50/-2.50 x 180 6/12

Does anyone understand these readings? How bad is her eyesight? Is it likely to improve? What I don't understand is that prescription wise, her readings are quite similar, so how come she has a lazy eye? The optician put R>L amblyopia.

P.s my daughter is 4 years and 5 months. Any advice would be much appreciated, I feel so tearful!

Thank you

pinkyp Thu 03-May-12 01:06:08

Hello, I hope I'm ok posting on here. My ds is nearly 18 months and I'm sure one of his eyes wonders (towards the nose/middle of his face) when he is looking at me. It's nothing dramatic just something he's done since birth really. I have photos of him looking slighty bozzeyed in his left eye but I always put it down to his age. Is there anything I should / can do? Is he too small for eye tests? His dad wears glasses full time (if that makes a difference). Thank you smile

hollie25 Fri 04-May-12 08:28:50

Hello again cheekyginger

I'm confused now as she doesn't have a squint just the eye drift thing looking at objects very close? Is this the same?

The eye test at school said her vision was normal.

Thank you

Hev0811 Fri 04-May-12 21:08:18

Hi there, my 4 year old daughter had her pre school check last week and it said she had reduced vision and a squint in her right eye. I took her to the optician today and have been told she has a squint and needs to wear glasses with a prescription of +2.5 in her right eye an +1.5 in her left. I am really upset that I never noticed this (she is very bright and reads really small letters with ease so never any cause for concern?) Can you please tell me what treatment should I expect going forward and will she need the glasses for ever. I still can't see any obvious issues although I think I am probably in denial! Thank you x

Wanksock Sat 05-May-12 19:12:12

Hi Cheekyginger, how did the first day back from mat leave go?

Just wondered what your thoughts are on prescription sunglasses for a 3yo?

cheekyginger Wed 23-May-12 21:28:16

Hi Thara,

Going from the prescription you have written down your DD has astigmatism. That prescription can be what we call transposed to read 0.00/+2.50 x 100. The numbers after the / are the amount of astigmatism.
Lots of children need glasses even though their parent dont it's just one of those things im afraid.
Your DD's vision is only mildly reduced and there is only a small difference between the two eyes. If she is wearing her glasses full time this vision should improve in both eyes and even out. One line difference is very mild amblyopia and it would only really be classed as amblyopia if the difference is still there once she has been wearing her glasses for 3 months.
Try not to be too tearful it's really good that this had been picked up now. Once she gets used to her glasses she will not know any difference!!! smile

cheekyginger Wed 23-May-12 21:32:22

Hi hollie25
Try not to worry. If her eye check came back as normal then it might just be something quirky grin. Shape of her eyes etc.
As i mentioned before you could take her to an optician. Purely for your own peace of mind. Eye tests are free for kids. smile

cheekyginger Wed 23-May-12 21:35:20

Hi pinkyp

Babies eyes should be fairly co-ordinated by the time they are 6 months, anything persisting after this should really be referred to the eye clinic.

I would recommend that you see your HV or GP and they should make the appropriate referral. make sure you tell them that his dad has had glasses since he was a child.

Hope this helps smile

Pippinella Wed 23-May-12 21:41:07

<<fellow Orthoptist waves at cheekyginger>> (also on maternity leave!)

cheekyginger Wed 23-May-12 21:50:54

Hi Hev0811

I hear this daily from parents, you are not alone!

Children get used to what they've got....they dont know any different. When children are longsighted they can over focus their eye and see reasonably well, unfortunately that means they are constantly over focussing and sometimes this can cause the eye to develop a convergent squint.

Treatment involves wearing the glasses full time. If the vision is poorer in one eye once the glasses have been worn for at least 8 weeks, patching may be required. As to how much patching that depends on the level of vision. The poorer the vision the more patching will be required (max amount given is 6 hours a day).

If your LO has a squint then the glasses may make this smaller OR completely correct it OR make no difference at all. You wont know this until she is wearing her glasses full time. If you want you could write down her diagnosis at her next appointment and ask me again!

cheekyginger Wed 23-May-12 22:06:33

Hi Wanksock,

Had a great day back. Helps that my DS is loving nursery. Really nice to be using my work brain again.

As for prescription sunglasses. If your LO is quite sensitive in the sun then they are definitely worth the money. My DS who is only one could barely open his eyes for the first few days of our holiday last week!!! We bought him a wee cheapy pair of sunglasses which he actually kept on for a surprising amount of time! So if your LO wears glasses anyway then he/she will likely take to them really well.

My hubby is fairly useful at times. Just picked his brain (he's an optician!). You can buy cheap sunglasses and get your optician to put lenses in them. Just need to avoid them being too wrap-around, if that makes sense!! grin

Hi all does anyone know how long is recommended to have off school after squint surgery?

skewiff Thu 24-May-12 18:41:10


I have just seen your post/thread and would like to ask:

My son is 5 and has an alternating convergent squint. He was patching for a while because the left eye was weaker. Then they said the difference was not too bad so stopped patching.

He has worn glasses since the age of 2 1/2 and they are +2.5.

We had his eyes tested 2 days ago and the left eye is definitely weaker than the right. So I don't understand why the prescription is the same in both eyes.

I also don't understand why we have not been asked to patch again. They said it can be weak on and off and so want to check again in 2/3 months. But I could see the difference ( he could see 2 lines smaller with right eye) and am sure that his left eye turns in more anyway.

What would you do?

Thank you.

mazza227 Mon 28-May-12 21:10:29

Hi Cheekyginger,

I hope you get to read this message, you have replied to me before with concerns about my daughter (5) who has a lazy eye. Thankfully the patching is working really well and is improving so much.

But I mentioned at my last orthoptist appointment that I have noticed her getting words mixed up when she reads her school books with me. ie she will say got instead of get, and when I ask her to check the word she takes a while to think about what it should be and then will get it right.
So had appointment today and she did a test with her, and agreed that she does struggle slightly with it, and has given me some sheets to do with her. (Visual motor & perceptual skills therapy booklet)

But I don't fully understand what all this means!

Is it all to do with her lazy eye or something completely different?

Is she likely to need extra help at school (she said that she doesn't at the moment) but does that mean she will as she gets older?

Is it something that she will always struggle with or will these sheets I have help her, and put a stop to it all?

Many thanks in advance if you can help.

NeedsInspirationFor2012Name Tue 29-May-12 07:41:46

Hi CheekyGinger

Hope work is going well! I posted on here a few months back and you were really kind and helpful so wanted to update.

DD had her appt (finally!) with the Orthoptics dept and Opthalmologist at the hospital and the outcome is the squint is because of her eyesight and is being corrected by glasses. She is longsighted and apparently her prescription is quite bad.

Her prescription is

R Sph +3.0 Cyl +3.0 Axis 110
L Sph +3.0 Cyl +1.5 Axis 80

She is over the moon that she gets to have princess glasses - mind you may be a different story when she realises that she will have to wear them all the time lol

They are apparently having to send the lenses away to be filed down as they would otherwise be too thick and heavy for her frames and little nose!

Feel awful that I haven't noticed before how bad her eyes are - {bad mum emoticon}!!

Thanks for all your support and help!

cheekyginger Tue 29-May-12 22:18:21

Hi largeglassofred,

Its recommended they avoid gym/PE and swimming pools for at least 2weeks, as for school 2-3 days should be fine.

cheekyginger Tue 29-May-12 22:23:38

Hi skewiff,

If his glasses are +2.50 in each eye then the vision is lazy due to squint not due to the glasses. As you said you feel that this eye is the eye that tends to squint most. If the eye is squinting then its not getting used therefore amblyopia develops (amblyopia is the correct term for when the vision is lazy).

When the patching is stopped the vision can drop back a little this is quite normal. But the potential will still be there. Your eye clinic will decide if it drops too much and re-start patching. Hope that makes sense confused

bishboschone Tue 29-May-12 22:28:03

Hi , I'm due to see an ophthalmologist with ds next week . He was prem and 11 months ( corrected 9 ) . He had delayed visual maturation and has a heavy eyelid ( not symmetrical) I think the eye itself is level with the other eye . ( no squint) The paed said if they thought it was obscuring his vision they would do something about it .Do you know what I should expect . I'm a bit scared sad

cheekyginger Tue 29-May-12 22:28:18

Hi mazza127

Basically these exercises are designed to help kids track along a line of texts. I can help with skipping words and skipping lines. This happens in kids without squints too. So in your DD's case it could just be a coincidence.

She wouldnt need any extra help in school, unless she gets diagnosed with dyslexia. But milk "reading difficulties" are often caused by tracking problems and can be treated with exercises. It's unlikely she would need to do these longterm. smile

cheekyginger Tue 29-May-12 22:31:15

No probs needsinspiration,

Thats what keeps me in a job!!! Vision screening is so important as lots of eye problems cant be detected otherwise.

Hope she gets on well with her glasses grin

cheekyginger Tue 29-May-12 22:39:41

Hi bishboschone,

With DVM the visual development is generally monitored by an Orthoptist till they can record an accurate level of vision approx age 1-2.

As for the heavy eyelid. The fancy name for this is a ptosis (silent P). Generally again the vision has to be monitored to ensure the lid isnt covering the pupil which can cause the vision to be lazy. If the lid doenst cover the pupil and the appearance of the lid is ok the eye Dr's tend to leave it alone. If you are not happy with the position of the lid then surgery can be an option in a child early teens.
Ptosis surgery is best left until the child has finished the vast majority of their growing as early surgery can result in the lid lifting too high as the child grows.

The most likely thing that will happen is that your DS will be assessed regularly to be monitored this could be every 3 month or every 6 months depending on what they find. Try not to worry smile

bishboschone Tue 29-May-12 22:44:27

Thank you , I'm not overly concerned with what he looks like . It isn't that obvious unless he is tired . He has been through a lot in his little life and it seems very superficial to put him through a general for cosmetic reasons. It does sometimes obscure the pupil though .

bishboschone Tue 29-May-12 22:46:24

I know he can see know as he watches my cats when they come in the room silently and tries to grab them . ( something he didn't do for a long time) do you know if dvm can affect eyesight later on.. ? I. E .. Is it likely he will need glasses ..

cheekyginger Tue 29-May-12 22:46:54

Hi bish, as long as it's above the pupil at for most of the day then it shouldnt affect his vision.

bishboschone Tue 29-May-12 22:52:21

Ok thank you ..

Thanks cheekyginger, surgery went well, eye still very bloodshot but was only sore for the first couple of days. Back to school tomorrow.

BirdyBedtime Wed 30-May-12 09:49:05

Hi again cheeky. Hope work is going ok and your DS(?) is enjoying nursery.

We had an interesting trip to Glasgow - what they are doing is really clever. DD was suitable for the gaming training but unfortunately because they needed to do a test to work out how much to 'damp-down' the image to her strong eye and boost the image to her weaker one, and couldn't get a reading from her sad. But they did agree to try again so we're going again later in the summer holidays and if they can get the reading then we'll have a week of training. There was a good outcome though as they tested her binocular vision (which strangely has never been done at the orthoptist visits) and she does have a surprising amount of depth perception despite the difference between her 2 eyes - so that was really good news from our point of view.

Also had some good news on the DS front - he was back at the optician for a 3-month check up since getting glasses and his weaker eye is now seeing as well as his stronger one smile. He'd also started to develop some depth perception. Back again in 3 months, but really positive, although we are now on the 3rd pair of glasses since Feb!