Does Your Child Have A Droopy Eyelid? If So, This Is What You Should Know.

Does one or both of your child’s eyelids droop? A drooping eyelid is called blepharoptosis (or just “ptosis“). While it can be the result of trauma, when it appears in children under the age of one it is usually a congenital condition that can lead to lifelong vision problems if it isn’t surgically corrected. This is what you should know. Drooping eyelids aren’t the only sign of ptosis. If only one eyelid droops, it may be easy to spot the difference between the two eyelids. However, if both eyelids droop fairly evenly, or the drooping is slight, your child may compensate by raising his or her brows to help raise the eyelids. He or she may also adopt a “chin-up” posture that allows him or her a better line of sight. That can make it hard to notice the ptosis at first. If you have the slightest concern, check with your eye doctor to be sure. If your child has ptosis, your eye doctor will probably order blood work to make sure that there is no underlying medical conditions causing the problem, such as diabetes or an autoimmune disorder. He or she may also run an MRI or other tests to rule out nerve damage or a brain injury. The long-term results of ptosis are serious. The most common problem associated with childhood ptosis is amblyopia (lazy eye). Amblyopia is poor vision that isn’t correctable through glasses or contacts. It develops when the brain never properly learns to interpret the fuzzy visual signals it receives from the weak or partially obscured eye. With ptosis, this can result from having the light partially blocked from the eye on a regular basis by the drooping eyelid. If left untreated, the vision in the eye will continue to deteriorate over time. The eye or eyes with a drooping lid also experience a slight but constant pressure which can cause the eye itself to become irregularly shaped. This can develop into a type of refractive error known as astigmatism, which will lead to lifelong problems with blurred vision. The potential for long-term problems makes it especially important to address ptosis in infants and toddlers as soon as the condition is detected. Surgery and supplemental treatments may both be necessary. If your child’s eye doctor determines that the ptosis is caused due to a weakness in the levator muscle, which is responsible for lifting the eyelid, surgery can be done to tighten and adjust the muscle. Sometimes additional work, called a blepharoplasty, has to be performed to remove excess eyelid skin as well. If your child has already developed a “lazy eye” by the time diagnosis of ptosis is made, it may be necessary to have your child use eyedrops and a patch to help the weaker eye “catch up” to the stronger eye and force it into a more normal development. While congenital ptosis isn’t...

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Do You Wear Contacts? 3 Things You Should Be Doing Now To Avoid An Eye Infection

If you wear contact lenses, you’re at a greater risk for eye infections than someone who doesn’t wear them. In fact, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that approximately 1 million people are seen by doctors each year due to eye infections resulting from contact lens use. Why? Not only do contact lenses decrease the amount of oxygen that gets to the eye, which makes your eye more vulnerable to infection, contact lenses can introduce bacteria into the eye if they are not cleaned properly. If you wear contact lenses, you have to be diligent to avoid eye infections. Following are three things you should be doing now to avoid an infection. Create a Clean Environment Each and every time you handle your contacts or do anything near your eyes whatsoever, you should create a clean environment. Be sure to wash your hands thoroughly with warm soap and water before messing with your eyes. You should also clean around your eye before placing your lenses. Always use a new, clean towel each time.  Care for Your Lenses Properly Unless you wear disposable lenses, you have to disinfect your contacts regularly. While heat is the most effective method for killing any bacteria that might be on the surface of your lenses, most people don’t have the equipment for this and have to rely on chemical agents to clean their contacts. If you clean your lenses with a chemical agent, be sure to follow all instructions carefully. Never use solution that you’ve already used or tap water to clean your lenses. Saline solution is not a disinfectant or sterilizing agent and should not be used as one.  Avoid Introducing Contamination Avoid rubbing or touching your eyes throughout the day when you have your contacts in. You should also never swim, shower or get into a hot tub with your contacts in since there may be bacteria in the water or on your skin. You only have to rub your eyes once to transfer bacteria from such an environment to your eyes. It’s also not a good idea to sleep in your contacts, even if they say you can wear them long term.  Eye infections are more common in people who wear contacts. Fortunately, you can prevent most eye infections by being diligent. All you have to do is care for your contacts properly and avoid certain contaminants as well as risky behaviors to keep your eyes healthy. Contact a company like The Eye Center for more information on caring for your contact...

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