Double vision (diplopia) is when you look at one object but can see two images. It may affect one eye or both eyes.

See an optician or GP if you or your child have double vision

Signs that your child may have problems with their vision include:

  • narrowing or squinting their eyes to try and see better
  • covering one eye with their hand
  • turning their head in unusual ways (for example, tilting their head)
  • looking at you sideways instead of facing forward

It’s important to get double vision checked out, even if it comes and goes. It’s sometimes a symptom of a serious condition.

What happens at your appointment

Your optician or GP can ask about your symptoms and do some simple, painless eye tests. They may refer you to an eye specialist in hospital for tests and treatment.

Your optician can also let you know if you need to see a GP instead.

Treating double vision

Your eyecare team or GP can advise you about the best treatment for double vision once they work out the cause.

In some cases, this may be simple treatments such as eye exercises, wearing an eye patch or being prescribed glasses or contact lenses.

Some conditions that cause double vision may require eye surgery to correct the problem.

Causes of double vision

Double vision has many possible causes, depending on whether one eye or both eyes are affected.