Pediatric and Family Services
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Concord Eye Care in New Hampshire offers complete eye evaluations for children and entire families. Our eye doctors are experienced and comfortable working with children, moms and dads and even grandparents too! We check for refractive errors as well as diseases and any other problems that may exist. A comprehensive eye exam typically includes a thorough medical history and eye chart test. We will also perform a tonometry test to check for signs of glaucoma and will examine your eyes under a "slit lamp" in order to check for cataracts and other corneal problems. Scheduling an eye exam with an optometrist or ophthalmologist on an annual basis is important to your good health. Finding an eye doctor you can trust is even more important and the eye doctors of Concord Eye Care want to earn your trust now and in the future by becoming your eye doctor. Call to schedule an appointment today!
We offer a full range of pediatric eye care services, from basic eye exams for children to advanced treatment of eye problems. Children can suffer from a unique set of vision ailments, including strabismus (crossed eyes). Although most eye diseases are more likely to occur among older people, children can develop glaucoma or be born with cataracts. Whatever your child's needs, our eye doctors have the training and experience needed to help. We have great respect for the patient/physician relationship and are well known for building a strong rapport with children of all ages. When you and your child schedule an appointment with the pediatric doctors at Concord Eye Care in New Hampshire you can be rest assured you will have a safe and comfortable experience.
Strabismus is a visual defect in which the eyes are misaligned and point in different directions. One eye may appear straight, while the other eye turns inward, outward, upward or downward. This misalignment may always be present or come and go. Sometimes the straight eye may turn while the misaligned eye straightens.
Strabismus is a common condition among children. About 4% of all children in the United States have strabismus. It can also occur later in life. The condition occurs equally in males and females. Strabismus may run in families.
Strabismus can be diagnosed during an eye exam. It is recommended that all children have their vision checked by their pediatrician, family doctor or ophthalmologist (medical eye doctor) at or before their fourth birthday. If there is a family history of strabismus or amblyopia, an ophthalmologist can check vision even earlier than age three. The appearance of strabismus may improve as the child grows, however, the child will not outgrow true strabismus.
Treatment for strabismus works to (1) Preserve vision; (2) Straighten the eyes; (3) Restore binocular (two-eyed) vision. The Ophthalmologist may prescribe eyeglasses to treat the condition. Other treatments may involve eye muscle exercises or surgery to correct the unbalanced eye muscles.
Amblyopia (Lazy Eye)
Amblyopia, commonly known as ‰¥þlazy eye‰¥ÿ, is an eye condition causing reduced vision in one eye. This means the vision or acuity (20/20) has not developed. It is estimated that three percent of children under six have some form of amblyopia. This relatively high incidence underscores the need for early detection programs such as vision screening in the primary care setting, in school and vision testing by your ophthalmologist.
Development of a child‰¥ús visual system depends upon the ability to clearly focus light upon the retina within the eye. Sharply focused images permit the visual system to develop in a normal fashion. This process of development occurs during the early years of life. An interruption in this process, especially during the first three years of life, will have a long lasting adverse effect on centers in the brain responsible for vision. Proper treatment to insure normal development of the vision system is essential.
Anything that interferes with clear vision in either eye during the critical period (birth to 6 years of age) can cause amblyopia. The most common causes of amblyopia are Constant Strabismus (constant turn of one eye), Anisometropia (different refractive errors or eye glass prescriptions in each eye), Deprivation (child may be born with opacities or cataract in the cornea or lens), or Ametropia (very large refractive error or need for glasses).
The principle for correcting amblyopia is directed towards helping the brain pay attention to the eye with deficient visual development. This may require sharpening the image that falls upon the retina with either eyeglasses or a contact lens when they are indicated. Anatomic defects such as cataracts or corneal opacities usually need to be surgically corrected first. Once the light can be focused clearly on the retina, occlusion or patching of the dominant eye is necessary. Occlusion will force the brain to use the amblyopic eye and enable the vision to improve. The daily schedule and duration of occlusion will depend upon the age of the patient, how long the defect has been present, and the severity of the amblyopia. The earlier treatment is started by an Ophthalmologist, the more rapidly improvement will occur.
An Orthoptist has specific training from an accredited program in the diagnosis and treatment of strabismus, amblyopia (lazy eye) and other aspects of pediatric ophthalmology. The Orthoptist will work in conjunction with Pediatric Ophthalmologists to obtain accurate strabismus measurements, monitor the progress of amblyopia and adjust treatment regimens as necessary. Patients will generally see both the Orthoptist and the Ophthalmologist, although during ongoing treatment the patient may be seen only by an Orthoptist.
An Orthoptist can be likened to a Physicians assistant in the world of pediatric ophthalmology. A patient may see an Orthoptist when they are being followed for amblyopia during patching. An Orthoptist will also see a new adult patient, with strabismus or double vision, who has been referred to the pediatric ophthalmologist for extensive evaluation. The Orthoptist often needs to spend a significant amount of time assessing the patient and formulating appropriate treatment prior to seeing the doctor. Other adults will see an Orthoptist to have prisms in their glasses adjusted for double vision. Some patients will need eye exercises for conditions which can also be administered and monitored by an Orthoptist.
To learn more, please contact us today.