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Wanted optometrist advice about squint

(41 Posts)
ktmummy1 Sun 29-Nov-15 19:26:45

I have recently created a thread about this so apologies for another thread but I am feeling v uneasy.

My dd is 3 yrs and 3 months old.
She started squinting at the beginning of Novber. Her left eye turns inwards when looking at me from a metre to 2 metres away. It doesn't always happen but enough to worry me. This is a new squint, her eyes have always been perfectly fine until recently.

Anyway, she has been referred to eye clinic but it's a wait. In the meantime I took her to an optician. He didn't see anything wrong, she didn't squint when there. Yet it's still happening, more regularly I would say.

I feel panicky and don't know what to do- I feel uneasy like there might be something causing this to happen, more sinister than just a lazy eye.

I'm looking for any advice or reassurance anyone is able to provide whilst I wait to hear from the eye hospital.


helensburgh Sun 29-Nov-15 19:30:00

Hi I'm an Orthoptist so we specialise in squints.
Did the optician use drops in her eyes. She is most probably longdighrd tgat causes over focusing and a squint.
A good optician should be able to do a glasses test might be beneficial to try another and ask for drops.
She may need other treatment which opticians can't do.

helensburgh Sun 29-Nov-15 19:31:32

It's v unusual for squint to be caused by anything sinister particularly the way you describe it as happening when focusing.

Redberrypie Sun 29-Nov-15 19:36:39

My ds suddenly started with a squint at 4, it wasn't all of the time, so at first people thought I was imagining it. Over a few weeks it got worse, the optician could spot it and referred him to the hospital.

I think we had a 3 week wait and he got prescribed glasses immediately. As it was caught early he has so far managed to maintain vision in both eyes and he gets checked every 3 months.

With glasses his eyes are straight, without worse but apparently that's normal.

I would try another opticians whilst you wait for the hospital, if nothing else it will give you a bit of a head start for when you do go to your appointment at the hospital.

Try not to worry, it is very common and often just seems to appear out of nowhere.

ktmummy1 Sun 29-Nov-15 19:37:25

Thank you for replying. No he didn't use drops as he said she'd have this done at the hospital and didn't want to put her off having it done. He looked in to her eye with a ophthalmoscope and tested her sight by me covering each eye in turn with my hand and getting her to name pictures which got smaller. What should my next step be. Google has thrown up three cases of children being diagnosed with brain tumours with only a subtle/occasional squint being their symptom. I am driving myself mad with worry.


Redberrypie Sun 29-Nov-15 19:44:20

The opticians I went to (small independent) did the eyedrops, they did sting but chocolate buttons helped. The hospital then didn't repeat it, as they were happy the results from the opticians.

I was worried about the same thing flowers, so I do know how you're feeling. I hope your appointment comes through soon to put your mind at rest.

hotandbothered24 Sun 29-Nov-15 19:48:53

I'm another orthoptist, squints are very rarely due to anything sinister. Children who develop a convergent suint are often longsighted and the extra focussing they have to do to try and see clearly can sometimes produce a squint. This is the age that a lot of squints start. If the optometrist had seen any cause for concern looking at the back of her eyes they would make an urgent referral to the eye clinic. I know it' very difficult not to worry but she is very unlikely to have a serious underlying condition causing her squint

ktmummy1 Sun 29-Nov-15 20:06:44

Thank you v for reassurance. I just can't shake the uneasy feeling I have. I'm not certain it is her left eye for sure but I know her eyes look unfocused. Like she's trying to focus and can't. It is very upsetting. I am grateful for your input. If I don't hear from the hospital this week, Im going to book her in with a private optometrist.

helensburgh Sun 29-Nov-15 21:01:33

I'm disappointed and dismayed the optician didn't use drops.
Think try another and explain re drops. Cyclopentolate.
Please try not to worry everything you are saying sounds like longsight being the cause.

hotandbothered24 Sun 29-Nov-15 21:08:25

Hi kt it's not another optometrist you need to see it is the hospital eye service. You may find an optometrist who will do a cycloplegic examination with the eye drops but they are still going to refer you to the eye hospital. You may be able to see an orthoptist privately and an ophthalmologist which would be more useful but will be quite expensive. Why not contact your GP and tell them how worried you are and see if you can get an appt any sooner

Crusoe Sun 29-Nov-15 21:09:07

I don't know a lot about squints but just wanted to offer a bit of reassurance. My son started with a squint at the same age as your daughter. It was exactly as Hotandbothered describes a convergent squint because of long sightedness. He was patched for a couple of years but has had an excellent result and the squint is barely noticeable now.
We went privately and I recommend this if you are really anxious. It's hard not to worry but it's unlikely to be anything sinister.

ktmummy1 Sun 29-Nov-15 21:09:46

Why should he have used drops? Would he not have been able to see her optic discs etc without? He said as she'd have this done at hospital, he didn't want to upset her. Should I try another opticians?

ktmummy1 Sun 29-Nov-15 21:13:26

Thanks for the responses. I'm so confused about the difference between optician/optometrist/Orthoptist/ophthalmologist.

hotandbothered24 Sun 29-Nov-15 21:18:58

The drops are needed to accurately measure refractive error, I.e how much long or shortsight is there. Dilated pupils also make it easier to get a good look at the back of the eye. The main thing the optician will be looking for at the back of the eye is the optic disc which is where the optic nerve leaves the back of the eye to see if there is any sign of swelling.

ktmummy1 Sun 29-Nov-15 21:22:01

He said her optic discs looked normal. Can he say this accurately just using the light and scope?

hotandbothered24 Sun 29-Nov-15 21:24:38

Optician/optometrist are the same thing. They complete a degree in optometry

Orthoptists specialise in squints and eye movement disorders so are the ones who really understand squints. They do a degree in orthoptics and almost always work for the nhs

Ophthalmologists are medically qualified doctors who specialise in eyes. Often a large eye unit will have a designated paediatric ophthalmologist

dementedpixie Sun 29-Nov-15 21:26:41

The drops are mainly used to help to work out if a prescription is required and how large the prescription may be. They stopped using drops on Dd/ds around age 8 as at that point they are more reliable at saying which lenses give clearer sight than others.

ktmummy1 Sun 29-Nov-15 21:27:11

Thanks for clarifying xx

dementedpixie Sun 29-Nov-15 21:27:56

Dd was under Orthoptist care at the local hospital until age 7/8ish at which point we started using a high street local independent optician

hotandbothered24 Sun 29-Nov-15 21:28:43

He may have been able to get a good view of the optic discs without dilated pupils, but best practice for a child with a squint is to dilate and refract

ktmummy1 Mon 30-Nov-15 05:27:43

He said he'd seen nothing to worry about and if my GP hadn't referred her to hospital, he wouldn't have!! In the meantime she continues to squint when looking at me from a metre or so away. Am I worrying unnecessarily, I just can't shake the feeling that something is wrong as this squint really has just developed. I'm also wondering why it happens sometimes and not others.

dementedpixie Mon 30-Nov-15 06:05:50

Yes I think you are worrying unnecessarily. Dd had a squint but it was because she was/is long sighted so she squinted when trying to focus. It was more pronounced when she was tired too. Her sight was poorer in the left eye too which didn't help. She had patching treatment to help with that.

There is plenty of time to sort out eyesight problems (until around the age of 8 as the eye is still developing) so a short delay is not going to be a problem.

hotandbothered24 Mon 30-Nov-15 06:50:32

Squints can start suddenly so that is not a cause for alarm. A squint being there intermittently is due to how much focussing(accommodating) she is doing. Have you got a copy of the last eye test your daughter had? If so there should be some figures to tell you what refractive error was found, without dilating eye drops this is likely to underestimate any longsight

ktmummy1 Mon 30-Nov-15 10:27:41

No I didn't receive any report after the eye test. Tganks again for trying to reassure me!

ktmummy1 Mon 30-Nov-15 19:34:40

Appointment received to see Orthoptist in hospital on Thursday. At least I'll know what's going on then. Thanks to all contributors to this thread, it has helped me calm down x

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