The medical name for squint is strabismus. It is a condition where the eyes do not always look in exactly the same direction. The difference in eye direction may be very slight, and may not always be present. Squint is one of the most common eye problems in children. Most squints occur in young children. A child with a squint may stop processing information from the affected eye so that it effectively stops seeing. This can lead to a type of vision loss in the affected eye, called amblyopia, which can become permanent unless treated early in childhood. Treatment usually involves patching the good eye, to force the brain to start to use the affected eye. Sometimes corrective eye surgery is needed to correct a squint. A squint is a condition where the eyes do not line up perfectly together in the direction of looking. Whilst one eye looks straight at the object the person is looking at, the other eye is 'off direction'. This may not always be obvious - some squints are very slight, and some are only present some of the time. The eye which is 'off direction' may turn to point inwards, outwards, upwards, or downwards. Some squints occur only when the affected person is tired; only when the eyes turn in a particular direction; or only when the eyes are closed. Some squints are present all the time. Squints are common. They affect about 1 in 20 children, including babies. Most squints develop before the age of 3 years, although squints can develop in older children, or in adults.
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