Are you worried your child has a lazy eye? It develops when the brain shuts off or suppresses vision in one eye. Vision might be suppressed if a child struggles to see properly through one eye because of nearsightedness, farsightedness or astigmatism. Usually, an eye patch is recommended in the treatment of a lazy eye. Our patients are instructed to have their patch on for several hours each day, and often the patients need eye glasses as well. So how does patching really help? In short, wearing a patch encourages your child’s brain to connect with the weaker eye, which, over time, will strengthen it.
In some cases, it can be quite hard to have your son or daughter fitted with a patch, and no less when they’re too young to properly comprehend the treatment. When the better eye is patched, it restricts their ability to see. It may be challenging to explain the patch to a young child; that they need to wear the patch to better their weaker eye, but not being able to see well is precisely the thing that makes the patching so hard. But don’t worry; there are a number of methods to help your son or daughter wear their patch. Implementing a reward system with stickers given when the patch is worn can be great with some kids. There are a variety of adhesive patches available in different fun designs. Make it an activity by giving them the opportunity to choose a different patch every day. Older kids can usually comprehend how patching works, so it’s helpful to have a little session where you talk about it.
Another trick some parents find helpful is also placing a patch on their child’s favorite doll or stuffed animal.
A positive outcome is dependent on you to stay focused on your long term goal.