Strabismus Evaluations in Whitehorse

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Assessments & Treatment for Crossed Eyes

If you’ve noticed your child’s eyes aren’t aligned or that they often tilt their head or close one eye to look at things, they may have strabismus (also known as crossed eyes or wandering eye).

Strabismus is a treatable eye muscle imbalance typically arising in children between birth and 21 months old. We recommend your child has their first eye exam by 6 months, or earlier if you or your child’s pediatrician notices their eyes are out of alignment.

Strabismus and other types of eye misalignment can also affect adults, causing double vision, headaches, and eye strain. We can evaluate your symptoms and recommend treatment options as part of a comprehensive eye exam.

What Is Strabismus?

Strabismus is when the eyes don’t line up with one another, often due to weakness in the eye muscles. In children, strabismus can also develop due to being farsighted.

One or both eyes may point in, out, up, or down. This eye wandering might occur all the time or just during certain activities, like ones that require close-up focus. Strabismus can cause double vision or lead to suppressed vision in one eye (lazy eye). Lazy eye happens because the brain adapts to the mismatched images from the eyes by ignoring information from the weaker eye.

Signs of strabismus in your child can include:

  • Their eyes being out of alignment
  • Squinting
  • Tilting their head to see more clearly

How Is Strabismus Diagnosed?

We can perform a gentle, thorough eye exam for your child, even at a very young age, to evaluate them for strabismus or any other childhood vision concerns.

For our infant patients, we’ll test their eye tracking and coordination, depth perception, and their pupils’ response to light. We will also use a special magnifying glass called an ophthalmoscope to take a noninvasive look inside your baby’s eyes. We will let you know if we need to use dilating eye drops for this exam.

We perform all the same tests for older children, but we’ll also have them read an eye chart. If your child doesn’t yet know their ABCs, we can use an eye chart that relies on shapes instead of letters.

Treating Strabismus

Your child won’t outgrow crossed eyes. It’s important to treat strabismus as early as possible so that treatment is effective and so your child’s learning and development aren’t derailed by vision problems.

For some patients with mild strabismus, regular glasses are an effective treatment, while others may need specialized prism lenses to help align the eyes.

In some cases, your child may need surgery to correct the muscle imbalance in their eyes.

Eye exercises may be recommended as part of your child’s treatment, particularly if their eye turning is occasional.

Strabismus can lead to amblyopia, also known as lazy eye. This happens because the brain starts to ignore the image from the wandering eye, which leads to the vision in that eye getting worse over time.

Amblyopia should be treated as early as possible. This is often done by patching, which means covering the “good eye” with a patch so that the brain is forced to rely on the weaker eye. Over weeks or months of patching, the weaker eye becomes stronger.

Visit Us

Our Address

  • 2093 2nd Avenue
  • Whitehorse, YT
    Y1A 1B5

Our Contacts

Find us in downtown Whitehorse across from the Yukon Visitor Information Centre, just steps from Main Street and the Yukon River.

For your convenience, we are wheelchair accessible.

Hours of Operation

  • Monday: 8:00 AM 5:00 PM
  • Tuesday: 8:00 AM 5:00 PM
  • Wednesday: 8:00 AM 5:00 PM
  • Thursday: 8:00 AM 5:00 PM
  • Friday: 8:00 AM 5:00 PM
  • Saturday: Closed
  • Sunday: Closed

Hours of operation may vary on holidays.

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