There is an alternative on wearing eye patches as a means of correcting older children who have lazy eye. Acupuncture has been found to be this wise an alternative.

This option for eye correction has been found out in a study done last December and reported that children who have undergone acupuncture treatments has well responded just like those who were suggested to wear eye patches.

Lazy eye is characterized as reduced vision in one eye that was not used enough in early childhood. This most often brought about by anisometropia wherein an eye focuses on a thing more than the other, thus, the use is lesser compared to the other eye. This occurs mostly with children with crossed yes or strabismus.

The research conducted by Jianhao Zhao, MD of Joint Shantou International Eye Center of Shantou University and the Chinese University of Hong Kong, China, together with some colleagues, enrolled eighty-eight children with ages ranging from seven to twelve years, who have lazy eye defects and wore glasses. These children were, at random, assigned to an eye patch group or acupuncture.

The group was composed of forty-three children and received 5 acupuncture treatments each week for a period of fifteen weeks. There were five needles that were inserted every session and were left there for fifteen minutes per session. The children were instructed once a day to perform near-vision activities like reading and typing.

The other children on the other group were made to wear eye patches for two hours in a day and were asked to perform, at the least, an hour doing near-vision activities within a day. They have tolerated the treatments two of those with the acupuncture session has reported to having experienced pain during their four sessions. It was found out that the pain was caused by the needles as it was not present as soon as the needles were taken out.

Fifteen weeks later found 41.5% of the lazy eye cases were resolved from the acupuncture group and a low of 16.7% from the ones who used eye patches. The results of the study openly suggest that acupuncture treatment for lazy eye is tantamount to the effect of the treatment for amblyopia as mentioned by the authors of the research itself, though there is an uncertainty why it is so. There are suggestions however, that it causes change on the activity on a part of the human brain which receives the signals through the eyes. Some account this as increasing the blood flow going to the eyes and its surrounding tissues.

As of now, it is still too early to tell if the procedure can be made as an optional treatment for patients like children with lazy eye as more study is still needed to further its efficiency. There is an estimate that 2-3% of the children population has lazy eye; in contrast to other who say that there is a total number of 5%. Previous studies aver that using glasses or contact lenses in order to correct this defect is only 305 successful.