What is amblyopia or lazy eye?


All the information you need to know about lazy eye or amblyopia

What is lazy eye or amblyopia?


Probably the first thing you do when you hear the word amblyopia or the term lazy eye is to inquire about it. In this article you will find all the information you need to clarify any doubts that may arise regarding this eye problem: what is the lazy eye, what are its symptoms, amblyopia both in childhood and in adulthood or the consequences of the lazy eye. Next, we explain each and every one of these issues.

Amblyopia, more commonly known as "lazy eye” or “lazy eye” is a decrease in visual acuity without there being any organic lesion that justifies it. 

There may be some eye defect, as can be the case of myopia, but this does not justify the loss of vision. Therefore, the less dominant eye receives fewer visual signals. 

Over time, the ability for both eyes to work in unison decreases, and the brain will end up suppressing or ignore input from the weaker eye.

It is therefore a modification in which the eye and the brain do not work together as they should, which translates into a decrease in visual capacity. 

Based on this, children who suffer from this disturbance they end up developing optimal vision in one eye, while not so good in the other. Therefore, although the eye affected by amblyopia may look normal, it is not really being used because the brain is preferring the vision of the other eye.

It is common for children to end up getting used to this problem of visual difficulty And don't tell your parents. As a consequence, your amblyopia may not be determined for a long period of time, such as months or even years. 

This leads to a concern in parents given by poor academic results or poor motor skills detected in their children. Sometimes the quickest and easiest solution is to visit the ophthalmologist.

El treatment for amblyopia It is based on correcting the way in which the eye and the brain work together and strengthening vision, correcting that existing lack of coordination.

It is very important that amblyopia is detect early, since waiting or not obtaining a proper diagnosis could lead to a decrease in or loss of normal visual acuity over time.

what is lazy eye or amblyopia

Lazy eye treatments


It is very important to start treatment for lazy eye as soon as possible, especially if it is during childhood, since it is at this age that the complex connections between the eye and the brain are being formed.

Therefore, it will be easier to solve the problem while it is developing than once the connections between the eyes and the brain have developed.

lazy eye

When does the lazy eye appear?

From birth to approx. the age of 8 years, a child's eyes and brain form vital connections. Anything that blocks or blurs vision in one or both eyes can slow down or prevent these connections.

If that happens, it is possible that the brain does not recognize completely the images seen by one or both eyes. 

Subsequently, the brain start ignoring pictures that sees the eye affected by amblyopia, so that the eye ends up weakening and loses vision strength (visual acuity). This eye is then called "amblyopic eye", "sleeping eye" or "lazy eye".

Take your child for a consultation if you perceive that their eyes wander after of the first weeks of life. Eye exams are especially important if there is a family history of squints, childhood cataracts, or other eye conditions.

For all children, a complete eye exam between 3 and 5 years of age.

lazy eye symptoms

The main thing to keep in mind in lazy eye detection is that, if it is not perceived at an early age (before eight or nine years), it is very difficult to reverse this situation in mature age. 

That is why detecting in time the symptom that are detailed below is of great importance during the so-called stage of brain plasticity of your child.

In the case of lazy eye in adults it is more complex, since, as we have commented, it is usually detected and treated during childhood. Lazy eye in adults also has a solution, but it must be assessed in the consultation.

  • These symptoms are:
  • The boy's eyes narrow.
  • The little one lowers his head frequently.
  • One of your child's eyes moves in or out because it doesn't communicate properly with the brain.
  • The minor does not perceive depth.
  • The child brings things too close to the face.
  • Headaches, usually due to lack of vision.

In any case, it must be taken into account that it is a pathology that is not very obvious. Its detection is only possible after carrying out an exhaustive visual examination, which may conclude that, indeed, this problem exists. 

If in the first weeks of life you already notice that your child's eyes wander, it is time to go to the consultation. Also if in your family there have been cases of childhood cataracts or strabismus.

Remember that the later the visual problem is detected, the more complex it will be to solve it.

It is not easy to detect amblyopia or lazy eye in adults, since it occurs mostly during childhood. And even children often do not become aware of their poor vision and, therefore, do not communicate it to their environment.

At an early age, after birth and during childhood, if the child is not able to detect the difficulties they may have in vision, nor are their relatives, teachers or pediatricians detecting them, it is possible that amblyopia will be transferred to their adult stage. .

Symptoms that help detect a lazy eye:

  •  Bad vision in one eye.
  • Little ability to focus.
  • Frequent headaches.
  • Little depth perception.
  • Difficulty seeing objects in three dimensions.
  • Difficulty detecting movement.
  • Low sensitivity to contrast and color.

It is important to be attentive to certain behaviors, such as if the child squints or winks at him to see better, or if he tilts his head. 

If you have witnessed one of these signs, it is recommended to go to the ophthalmologist as soon as possible to do an eye exam.

For this reason it is very important to carry out revisions from an early age, because the sooner it is detected, the easier it will be to solve the problem.

symptoms lazy eye or amblyopia
lazy eye adults

Lazy eye in adults

Although it is a condition that mainly affects childrenIf amblyopia or lazy eye is not diagnosed and therefore not treated during childhood, this visual problem is transferred to adulthood.

In these cases, specialist ophthalmologists are more skeptical when it comes to offering a solution.

Once the person is already an adult, the visual system it is fully developed. It must be borne in mind that a person's vision is finished developing between the ages of 6 and 9.

It is precisely for this reason that an older person has difficult to treat your case of amblyopia if you haven't done it before. It is considered practically irreversible after 8 or 9 years.

Amblyopia, in fact, is the most common cause of visual disability in childhood.

Lazy eye in children

Amblyopia or lazy eye is the most frequent cause of loss of vision between children. It affects approximately 3% of the population. It consists of the decrease in visual acuity of one eye without there being any structural variation in that eye.

This visual deficiency is usually caused by the lack of stimulation Correct vision throughout the critical period of visual development because one eye is used less than the other for various reasons.

But why does the child lose vision? Images from both eyes reach the brain. If the brain detects much sharper images from one eye than from the other, it will not generate as many neural connections in the optic nerve of the lazy eye as well as in the dominant eye, in this case the lazy eye, so it will progressively lose vision when it is not used.

If this problem is not treated in time, the child will remain with a vision deficit important in that eye for the rest of your life.

lazy eye child
consequences of lazy eye or amblyopia

Lazy eye consequences

Next, the lazy eye and its consecuencias.

The main problem for the patient who is detected with amblyopia or lazy eye is that he sees affected your depth vision, which allows you, for example, to calculate distances.

This, upon reaching adulthood, can affect the labor sphere, beginning with the possibilities that are closed to you because of this visual difficulty.

An example of this would be those where both their health and that of others depended on their visual ability to do the job optimally.

We present here the case of a 20-year-old boy who was detected Unilateral anisometropic amblyopia, with an initial vision in his amblyopic eye of 50% (0,5), which was never treated. For this reason, he was excluded from the aviation school after the first medical examination. Given his age, he would be declared, a priori, unfit for his treatment. 

After 9 months working together in an intense program of rehabilitation visual, the 20-year-old came to develop a vision of almost 90% (0,9). Result? He passed the medical exam for access to the aviation school.

What is Dicopt?

It is very easy to use

Dicopt is an app that is installed on the mobile, which allows the patient to carry out the therapy anywhere, adapting to the lifestyle of each family.