The Common Causes of Amblyopia

The Common Causes of Amblyopia

Amblyopia develops from other eye and vision problems. If you’re anything like us, you’ll want to know what those conditions are so you can understand your child’s vision needs better. So here’s a quick run down of the 4 most common causes of Amblyopia.


Strabismus is a condition in which the eyes don’t point in the same direction at the same time. One or both eyes may turn inward (esotropia), outward (exotropia), upward (hypertropia), or downward (hypotropia) either sometimes (intermittent) or all of the time. To avoid seeing double, the brain may ignore the image from the eye that is not focussed on the object and this prevents that eye from developing properly...leading to Amblyopia.


Short-sightedness (near), long-sightedness (far) and astigmatism (eye shaped like a football)  are all refractive errors that cause blurry or distorted vision. Your child may have a refractive error that is worse in one eye causing different levels of vision between the eyes, this is called anisometropia. The brain will ignore the blurry image received by that eye and therefore the vision will not develop properly, leading to Amblyopia. (Note: this is the most common cause).

Congenital Cataracts:

Some babies are born with cataracts, where the eye’s normally clear lens is cloudy. Since the eye cannot see clearly, the brain will rely on the other eye and amblyopia can develop in the eye with the cataract.

Droopy Eyelid:

The clinical name Ptosis, known as droopy eyelid, can block vision in a child's developing eye and lead to amblyopia. The droopy eyelid needs to be corrected, usually through surgery, to prevent further blockage of the child's vision and reduce the impact of  Amblyopia.

Find out more about Amblyopia and how to treat it here .