The subspeciality of ophthalmology, Pediatric ophthalmology is concerned with visual development, vision care and eye diseases in the children. A child’s vision can be affected by many eye diseases and conditions. The most common vision problems that affect a large number of children are Blepharitis (swollen eyelids), Astigmatism, Amblyopia (lazy eyes) and Conjutivities (pink eye).
The vision problem in children usually appears between 18 months-4 years. The most common vision issues are –
Blepharitis : This condition results from the inflammation in the eyelid oil glands that causes extreme crusting of the eyelids and swollen eyelids. This condition can be most evidently seen in the morning. There could also be a feeling of gritty sensation or as if there is something in the eye. The different symptoms of this condition include –
The condition can be treated by using eyelid scrubs and warm compresses. By following a proper eyelid hygiene this condition can be controlled. Antibiotics can also be taken in case of infections.
Amblyopia : Also commonly referred to as lazy eye, this condition sometimes can be seen in the growing children. A child may have diverse qualities of vision in his left and right eyes. One eye could result in weaker images without affecting the other eye. The weaker images sent by the eyes are gradually accepted by the brain.
The aim of the treatment is to make the weaker eye stronger and to provide clear vision for both the eyes. The treatment is done by covering the strong eye with a patch so as to force the weak eye to concentrate more and more. Amblyopia treatment includes the prescription of vision therapy, lenses and prisms.
Conjunctivitis : The condition of conjunctivitis (pink eye) is when the white part of the eye starts to appear pink. The reason for this could be excessive discharge, sensation of a foreign body or tearing in the eye. Conjunctivitis in children is due to bacterial or viral infection. It can also be due to allergy in older children. The prescription of ointment or eye drops depends on the cause of the problem.
Viral Conjunctivitis : This condition is connected with the problem of cold. The ‘adenovirus’ is the cause of viral conjunctivitis. It can spread among a large number of people causing an epidemic of viral conjunctivitis.
Allergic Conjunctivitis : This condition can be seen in those people who are having signs of allergic diseases namely eczema, high fever and asthma. Antigens like dust mites, cosmetics and pollen are responsible for allergic conjunctivitis.
Bacterial Conjunctivitis : Bacteria like streptococci, Haemophilus or staphylococci is responsible for bacterial conjunctivitis. This bacteria may come from the patient’s upper respiratory tract or their own skin. Bacteria transmitted from the other person having bacterial conjunctivitis is also the cause of this condition.
Astigmatism : This condition results in an irregular shape of the cornea. A child may require to wear glasses as this condition may lead to blurred vision.
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