Making a spectacle of ourselves by not spotting our son’s lazy eye spotting our son’s lazy eye
DOUBLE TROUBLE FOR A FIRST-TIME DAD OF TWINS
WE CAN be thankful for many things living in the UK. We invented Sunday lunch, bank holidays I imagine, probably football and the NHS.
Thankfully, it is entirely due to the tireless work of our local GP to find something wrong with Thomas that we discovered he has a lazy eye.
Disappointingly, his parents hadn’t spotted one eye looks in a slightly different direction to the other. Thankfully, a trained professional fully invested in the health of our child was there to clear up after our parenting mess.
The boy twin was referred to ophthalmology for further tests with another professional, who would no doubt spot something else we’d missed, despite him being our responsibility.
Unfortunately, I was at work so unable to accompany Victoria to the hospital. I say ‘unfortunately’, although it sounded horrendous.
Victoria had to escort 19-month-old twins around six different rooms for two hours in a buggy that wouldn’t fit through any doors.
Thomas was tested on various machines to rule out anything truly terrible and to see what was going on. He even did the letters on the wall test while the ophthalmologist tried a variety of lens on him.
I’ve no idea how that works. He was always going to do badly unless the letters on the
wall read ‘Hello’, ‘no’ and ‘all gone’.
After all the testing, Thomas was left with the diagnosis of amblyopia leading to astigmatism. Essentially, it’s a lazy eye, which is odd because the rest of Thomas is quite active.
The doctor explained if one eye isn’t working as well as the other, the brain ignores that one and puts all the energy into the ‘good one’.
This elitist approach continues until the child reaches seven or eight and the brain gives up on optical development and you’re left with one ‘good eye’ and a ‘lazy one’.
Fortunately, we can correct the imbalance before that stage, if he wears glasses. If the glasses don’t work, they bring out the eye patch, but the important thing is you can correct his vision. However, this hinges on Thomas wearing glasses for extended periods of time.
You might imagine it’s very difficult to persuade a toddler to wear spectacles and you’d be right.
It’s a nightmare made worse by the fact once we get them on his face, his sister steals them.
Thankfully, they’re in nursery for three days a week so I left them with the glasses and strict instructions that he should wear them at all times. All I have to do now is hope another group of professionals can do what I can’t.
You’ve got to have a system to stop a sister stealing your specs