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Squinting Can be a Vision Problem

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Squinting can indicate pediatric vision problems

HOUSTON -Although summer may be the season for sun, parents should not always assume squinting is caused by bright light. "Squinting is the reflex for a number of eye problems," said Dr. David Coats, chief of ophthalmology at Texas Children's Hospital and associate professor of ophthalmology and pediatrics at Baylor College of Medicine.

Coats urges parents to seek professional help if their child:

* Is older than 3 months and has eyes that appear to be misaligned.

* Squints and tilts head to see more clearly and/or strains to see near or far.

* Has eyes that constantly flutter in either an up-and-down or side-to-side motion.

* Holds a book very close to the eyes and/or sits exceptionally close to a TV or computer screen.

* Has double vision and/or has difficulty with coordination.

* Has eyes that exhibit extreme tearing or discharge, appear infected, red, scratchy, irritated and/or painful.

* Sees flashing lights or floating spots in front of eyes.

* Has frequent headaches and/or appears overly sensitive to light.

For more information on Texas Children's Hospital Ophthalmology Clinic, visit

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