Therapy of strabismus
Strabismus must be treated in order to prevent the most serious complication, namely weak vision. Here, however, it is not only important to correct the squint position of the eye, because unfortunately that alone is not enough.
The weaker eye must also be trained in its plasticity during therapy. It must be asked to deal with vision just like its healthy partner eye and to train it.
It is important that the Therapy takes place as early as possible, because the human eye develops its plasticity between the 1st and 5th year of life.
As explained above, the first priority in the therapy of strabismus is the treatment of the weak-sightedness, only then should the strabismus surgery take place. Without treatment from a specialist for Ophthalmology the squint will not improve and permanent damage will result.
Basically 3 principles of therapy apply:
- possible compensation through glasses
- Covering an eye with an occlusal plaster
- Squint operation
1. Compensation through glasses
In the event of farsightedness, glasses can be used to try to compensate for the deficit in accommodation. Accommodation is the ability of the lens of the eye to twist and flatten itself in order to focus on objects at different distances.It can be the case that the child is squinting because one eye is farsighted and therefore only uses one eye, with which a sharp image can be created, to fixate.
Read more on the topic: Visual disturbances in children
2. Occlusion treatment
By masking off the better eye, one wants to train the weak eye to "forced". The weak eye must be trained in order to make both eyes equally visionary. So the child will look with both eyes.
During therapy, the eye can either be taped shut with a plaster or simply covered with glasses
The duration of the plaster occlusion of an eye must always be taken into account. One eye, not even the better one, must not be covered for too long - only for a few days in a row. If the better eye is to be prevented from seeing by means of glasses, the lens is glued to this side. This is usually the worse method, as the children look over the edge of their glasses or even don't wear them.
3. Surgical treatment
After the occlusion treatment, the operation takes place. As a rule, this should be done in preschool age. If there is a forced head posture or a very large squint angle, the operation can also be carried out earlier.
If possible, operate on two eye muscles.
You have to imagine that one muscle is too short and another too long. The squint is always in the direction of the short muscle. The insertion of the too short muscle on the eye is cut off and shifted back so that the eye can move further towards the center. The muscle on the opposite side is shortened. The end result is that the eye is in the center and looking straight ahead.