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Can a lazy eye cause reading inaccuracies?

(18 Posts)
wigglywoowoo Sat 29-Sep-12 22:47:34

DD is 6 (YR1)and I hesitate to say a good reader for her age. The issue for me, is that words are missed completely and others are sometimes substituted. The words she misses or get muddled are simple ones such as 'and' 'the' 'it' 'is' etc. It almost feels like she doesn't think they are worth her time but the harder words are.

Whenever she does it, if she doesn't self-correct I ask her to reread the sentence. She will then go back, read slower and get it right. I have asked dd what happens at school when she does this but in her words "They let me get away with it!" hmm. I have noted in her reading records several times about the inaccuracies but had no response.

I know I'm probably worrying about nothing but I feel strongly that she needs to learn to read accurately, mainly because I'm dyslexic and I am aware that my own reading can be quite inaccurate. I'm worried that whatever she is doing is becoming a habit as asking her to reread the sentence, isn't resolving the issue.

She wears glasses for a mildly lazy eye and is getting an eye patch in the couple of weeks.

Could the inaccuracies be down to her eyes, lazy reading or normal reading development?

Tgger Sat 29-Sep-12 22:54:15

Errr, probably just her being lazy rather than the lazy eye grin. DS does similar when he reads, especially if he's hurrying to find out what's going to happen in the story or tired. DS has an eye patch! I don't think it's anything to do with that.

With DS I've told him to slow down and stressed that accuracy- every single word is important. Then I stop him on the word rather than at the end of the sentence when I can. Generally he reads very accurately though and certainly can "up his game" when asked to. I think it is part of reading development.

sausagesandwich34 Sat 29-Sep-12 23:01:26

I have a squint (hate the term lazy eye, it's not like it's not trying grin )

it can cause issues with tracking side to side, often whole lines will be missed out or my sight may jump to the right and then I will start reading backwards

my brain knows my eyes do these weird things and accomadates for it and it caused me no problems with learning to read (August baby, top reading group at school from reception class)

missing connectives is very common with young readers, it isn't always picked up on when reading in class as long as the reader understands the content
a skill to be developed is scan reading and one of the techniques is missing out words while identifying key words and most adults will do this naturally

the fact that your DD can do it when prompted, and it sounds like she is just speeding ahead, means I wouldn't worry about it
just keep stressing that all the words are important as at her age they are

(but it's not her 'lazy' eye)

wigglywoowoo Sat 29-Sep-12 23:14:12

Thank you both for the advice, I will persist in stressing the importance of reading all the words and hope it eventually sinks in.

steppemum Sat 29-Sep-12 23:30:22

the short answer is yes, squint can cause reading difficulties. I remember my mum teaching a very disruptive but bright year 6. When talking to the school nurse one day she discovered that there were concerns over his squint. The family had never followed up on appointments. The nurse said he may well be getting double vision all the time. My mum spoke to family, who hadn't realised that it affected his sight (thought is was cosmetic issue) and got it fixed. (needed operating.) Disrupted behaviour stopped, academic work improved in leaps and bounds.

But. I think all good readers also do what your dd is doing. Reading in your head is very different to reading out loud. A good reader at year 6 should be reading in her head. Whe you read in your head you don't actually read every word. You learn to skim some, especially unimportant words. You learn to read several words at once, so you see a phrase and don't actually read it word for word. She sounds as if she is doing a fair bit of that and then when she has to read aloud she is forced to slow down, which frankly is boring, so she reads quickly and misses out unimportant words. As long as she understands, she doesn't have a problem for herself. As a listener of course we have the problem that it doesn't sound right, and pick her up on it. (which you should do)

Reading aloud is a great skill, but it isn't actually the same skill as just reading if you see what I mean. It is a bit more like acting!

KTK9 Sat 29-Sep-12 23:54:29

DD, just 8, does exactly the same, often putting in words that aren't there, although in the right context and could well be! It is almost like she is so used the stories following a similar format, that I think she just predicts what is likely.

She reads a lot in her head now and I think reading out loud - school asks for 10 minutes a day - is just a bit of a 'faff' to her now.

I think it is quite normal and like your dd does, when she slows and takes time, she is perfect.

I also think that children feel that they have to read quickly, as that is what a good reader does, where in fact a really good reader or story teller, will take things slowly, pause for effect and give the listener time to think.

By the way, I have a really bad lazy eye, certainly couldn't read out of it, if I close my good eye, but it hasn't affected my reading, except in bright sunlight, when I tend to shut it, or if I am lying down and my good eye is squished in the pillow, then I can't see much!

As long as the other eye has good vision, the brain apparently compensates.

HTH

steppemum Sun 30-Sep-12 00:18:39

sorry, miss read 6 yo as year 6. Then she definitely needs to slow down and be more accurate. But same applies, can read faster to herself, so when reading aloud misses workds as she wants to read faster.

Ilovemydogandmydoglovesme Sun 30-Sep-12 01:18:00

I'd just like to say that I also have a lazy eye, can't see out of it on its own, closing it in full sun etc, and I have always loved reading and am an exceptionally fast reader. I was always able to scan whole pages and pick out every detail whilst my classmates were still ingesting it word by word. I did well at school etc. Not to boast obviously grin but it never affected me at all.

Mine was inherited. My nan had it, it skipped a generation and them me and my brother and sister all had it, although they had it quite mildly compared to me.

Do not despair!

mrsbaffled Sun 30-Sep-12 15:22:09

I would say if it's still a problem next year I would look into seeing a behaviour optometrist (google BABO). My son had eye tracking problems and it meant he would miss out small works and even whole lines. He had a course of vision therapy and it has cured this problem.

horsemadmom Sun 30-Sep-12 16:51:48

Second the need for a BO. It may not be a lazy eye but convergence problems. This can look like a lazy eye but is actually the neurological connection between eye and brain.

wigglywoowoo Sun 30-Sep-12 20:39:27

Thanks for the further replies.

I do have a squint but it was only after learning that my daughter had one(not obvious) that I learned the medical meaning of a squint. It always meant something different to me.

The Babo site makes interesting reading, as dd ticks many of the boxes and for example would explain why she is tilts her books diagonally to read. However I've always been inclined to think it was dyslexia as she reads better with my colour overlays.

Is this something that the hospital could address, as from the babo list there isn't anyone within 20 miles of where I live?

sausagesandwich34 Sun 30-Sep-12 21:45:43

don't be misled into thinking it's dyslexia by the coloured overlays

many people that don't have dyslexia find it easier to read with the colours (including me)

mrsbaffled Sun 30-Sep-12 22:02:45

The coloured overlays help with Irlen Syndome, which is not the same as dyslexia (though can look like it - as can tracking / convergence problems)

totallypearshaped Sun 30-Sep-12 22:35:38

Why don't you get his eyes tested and take the guessing out of it - then you'll know for sure.

My DD has a muscle problem in her eye - also hate the label "lazy" eye. (IMO it should be banned as there's nothing lazy about it).

One of her muscles in her eye is too strong and pulls her view outwards - it's called a convergence problem - but with daily exercises prescribed from the ophthalmic optician, we had her reading speed and accuracy up in a few months. There was a noticeable improvement also with coloured lenses.

totallypearshaped Sun 30-Sep-12 22:37:37

her eyes, sorry! Now, where are my specs?

barleysugar Sun 30-Sep-12 22:43:34

Please don't feather the nests of the behavioural opts. Total and utter charlatanism.

mrsbaffled Sun 30-Sep-12 22:49:31

I totally disagree barley - I was sceptical, but decided to give it a try. The vision therapy we did was the best thing we could have done for DS. It not only fixed his vision problem (even a nonprofessional like me could see the improvement in his eye tracking - completely erratic and jumpy at the start of the course, to very very smooth in a few months - and a sudden improvement in copying and smaller handwriting), but also improved his gross motor skills. He no longer falls off chairs and does not bump into things.

It worked for us.

rrbrigi Mon 01-Oct-12 10:52:12

My son has "lazy eyes" as well. He is in Reception now. He also wears patches on his eyes for at least 2 hours a day. Before we go to the doctor he missed words or lined when we were reading. Small words are easier to miss them than long words. The first time when the doctor checked his eyes, he could not read very big signs with his left eye. The doctor told that my son nearly blind on his left eye, because his right eye was improving until the other went weak and his brain getting the information 90% from his right eye.

The first time when we read with his glasses on was a lot better than before (without glasses). When we first read with his patch on his left eye (with glasses too), he needed to hold the book 10 cm from his eye to be able to read at all. He wears the patches every day since June (approx. 4 months). The first two months he was coping ok so he used the patches more than 5-6 hours a day. The last two months he used those average 3-4 hours a day. His reading improved a lot since then. He does not miss any words or lines. The last time when we saw the doctor he told me his eyes a lot better than it was in the beginning. He could read the signs well. And the doctor could not decide if my son still needs patches or not. At the end I asked the doctor to give patches for us just one more time. But my son needs the glasses until he will be 7, just to make sure the "lazy eyes" not coming back.

It is not your daughter fault. She is not lazy with reading, give time for her eyes to improve. I think it is very hard to read when you do not see the book clearly. Think about that she can see two words together or two words in different lines when they are next to each other. Couple of more month patching and she will be fine. I do not know if you use the patching at home or in the school, but it is better to use when you in an environment when her eyes are stimulated (when she is reading, drawing, etc...), because this time the patches more useful.

Please do not forget it is not a two weeks job, she needs months to improve.

Good luck.

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