Eye crossing in children
I’ve learned very recently that eye crossing in young children is somewhat of a common occurrence. It normally shows up when they’re around the age of two and will not clear up on its own without treatment. I first noticed my daughters eyes crossing around the age of 2 ½. For one reason or another I thought it was just a fluke and even remembered seeing a photo of myself around that age with cross eyes with no recollection of needing any treatment. I figured out, hopefully not too late that her eyes do in fact need treatment and that it could be detrimental to put it off any longer.
Estropia and lazy eye
There are different types of what most people would refer to as “lazy eye”. In my daughters case it is both eyes but never at the same time that cross. After learning of her diagnosis, it was a bit surprising to find out that there were so many different types of “eye crossing conditions”. Hers in particular is estropia. This is where the eyes cross inward, and never outward. Neither eye is stuck in the crossed position nor do they always look like either one is crossed at all. I learned that, they actually are always crossed just not as severely from one moment to the next.
How estropia (eye crossing) is corrected
I couldn’t get into the doctor for six months when I made an appointment, and I of course was worried about how well she could focus for that period of time. I did a lot of research and figured out, with her particular case, her eyes could only be corrected with glasses, and eye therapy, or surgery. Pictures of this condition were what gave me a clear understanding of what it is she has. Both eyes don’t know how to focus together. I originally thought that an eye patch could help clear things up for her by covering up the “good” eye and strengthening the bad eye. This isn’t the case with estropia unless amblyopia is present as well. Amblyopia is the constant crossing of one eye, meaning one eye is weaker than the other. In my daughters case neither eye is weak exactly, they just do not know how to focus together.
Getting their eyes to focus together
I started “training” her eyes, just based on what I knew about it. When one eye would cross, I would cover the “good” eye until the crossed eye would straighten out. I looked up what eye therapy consisted of and just started doing those activities with her. Having her follow my finger with both eyes. If one eye didn’t want to cooperate I would move my finger over further until she couldn’t see it unless she turned both eyes in the same direction. After doing this several times she told me her eyes felt tired. That was what assured me that her eyes were getting a work out “learning” how to focus together.
Ultimately visiting an eye doctor is the only way to correct eye crossing
This is in no way to replace what an eye doctor can offer as far as therapy and glasses, but it should help put your mind at ease knowing a few of the things they are going to do after the diagnosis, and using a few of those things to your advantage. Our appointment is in about five days and her eyes have good and bad days. I noticed though, that her eyes have more good days since I started taking it in my own hands, even if just for a moment.