strabismus & Eye Exercises

    Strabismus is a condition in which the eyes do not point in the same direction. It can also be referred to as a tropia or squint.

    Strabismus occurs in 2-5% of all children. About half are born with the condition, which causes one or both eyes to turn:

    • inward (esotropia or "crossed eyes")

    • outward (exotropia or "wall eyes")

    • upward (hypertropia)

    • downward (hypotropia)

    Strabismus is equally common in boys and girls. It sometimes runs in families.

    Types of strabismus

    Esotropia is the most common type of strabismus in infants. Accommodative esotropia develops in children under age two who cross their eyes when focusing on objects nearby. This usually occurs in children who are moderately to highly farsighted (hyperopic).

    Another common form of strabismus, exotropia, may only be noticeable when a child looks at far-away objects, daydreams, or is tired or sick.

    Sometimes the eye turn is always in the same eye; however sometimes the turn alternates from one eye to the other'.

    Most children with strabismus have comitant strabismus. No matter where they look, the degree of deviation does not change. In incomitant strabismus, the amount of misalignment depends upon which direction the eyes are pointed.

    Causes and symptoms

    Strabismus can be caused by a defect in muscles or the part of the brain that controls eye movement. It is especially common in children who have:
    • brain tumors

    • cerebral palsy

    • Down syndrome

    • hydrocephalus

    • other disorders that affect the brain

    Diseases that cause partial or total blindness can cause strabismus. So can extreme farsightedness, cataracts, eye injury, or having much better vision in one eye than the other.
    In adults, strabismus is usually caused by:
    • diabetes

    • head trauma

    • stroke

    • brain tumor

    • other diseases affecting nerves that control eye muscles

    The most obvious symptom of strabismus is an eye that isn't always straight. The deviation can vary from day to day or during the day. People who have strabismus often squint in bright sunlight or tilt their heads to focus their eyes.

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