Strabismus is the medical term for misalignment of the eyes. In many cases, the condition results from a lack of muscle control that causes one eye to wander in another direction. Three percent of children are affected by strabismus and may require treatments such as corrective lenses, patching and eye exercises, according to The Merck Manuals
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The purpose of exercises for strabismus is to realign the eye, improve focusing abilities and visual processing, and strengthen the affected muscles.The exercises can be practiced in the privacy of your home or in a medical office with a trained therapist.
Recommended by MayoClinic.com, pencil push-ups require the patient to focus on a tiny letter on the side of a pencil while moving it closer to the bridge of his nose. Practiced for 15 minutes each day, the exercise stops when he can no longer focus, resuming to complete as many as 100 repetitions.
Computer Therapy Exercises
In the age of technology, visual-motor skills and endurance can be developed with specialized computer and optical devices. Using computer software designed to improve convergence, patients practice eye-focusing exercises that with repetition, eventually lead to automatic controlled eye movements. MayoClinic.com notes that computer exercises can be done at home, with results printed out to present to doctors for further evaluation.
When strabismus is diagnosed early, the problem is usually corrected. If corrective lenses and eye exercises are not enough to align the eyes, surgery may be required. The surgery in itself does not correct vision, but is performed to position the muscles of the eye. A surgeon makes a small incision in the conjunctiva to locate and repair the affected muscles. The procedure is generally done on an outpatient basis and results are immediate, although the patient may still need to wear corrective lenses.