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Patches: Not Just For Pirates

Many children have a lazy eye. A lazy eye comes about when the brain turns off or suppresses vision in one eye. This might happen if someone isn't able to see well through one eye because of nearsightedness, farsightedness or astigmatism. Along with corrective glasses, one of the treatment options involves placing an eye patch on your child's eye for a number of hours per day to boost sight in the lazy eye. Patching.

In some cases, it can be very hard to have your son or daughter wear a patch, and even harder if they are really young. When the better eye is patched, it infringes on their ability to see. It can be tricky to explain the patch to your young child; that they must wear the patch to improve their weaker eye, but not being able to see well is just the thing that makes patches so hard. There are a number of tricks that make eyepatches a bit easier for kids to wear. With preschoolers, you may find success by using a sticker chart. There are lots of adhesive patches available in many fun designs. Take advantage of all the options and make it an activity by allowing them to select a different patch every day and then putting a sticker on the chart when the patch stays on. For kids who are a little older, explain the mechanics of wearing a patch, and refer to it as an exercise to strengthen their eye.


Patches are a great solution to lazy eyes and can be very helpful, but it depends on you to remain focused on the long term goal.