Seeing clearly is not enough. For many people, reading and hand-eye coordination tasks can be very difficult. The act of sight not only includes one's eyes but also the neurological activity that processes visual information. Sight plays an important role in the learning of mechanical activities, such as throwing a ball or skiing down a hill. Sight is the steering mechanism; it is the main activity that provides feedback to the brain regarding what the body is encountering.
What is Vision Therapy?
Vision therapy is an individualized and supervised treatment program designed to correct visual-motor and/or perceptual-cognitive deficiencies. Vision therapy sessions and procedures are tailored to enhance the brain's ability to control:
- Eye alignment
- Eye teaming
- Eye focusing abilities
- Eye movements
- Visual Processing
Who benefits from Vision Therapy?
Patients of all ages can benefit from vision therapy. The nature of the therapy program varies with the condition treated. Children and adults with visual challenges such as those listed below often benefit from vision therapy.
Learning-related vision problems
Vision therapy can help those individuals who lack the necessary visual skills for effective reading, writing, and learning (i.e. eye movement and focusing skills, convergence, eye-hand activity, visual memory skills, etc.).
Poor clarity and Binocular Coordination
Put simply, sight is how clearly a person sees. But, there is much more to getting information into a person's brain that just seeing clearly. Vision is the act of perceiving visual information with the eyes. Vision therapy helps individuals develop normal coordination and teamwork of the two eyes. When the two eyes fail to work together as an effective team, performance in many areas can suffer.
Strabismus is a condition that is commonly described as a wandering eye, wall eye, esotropia, or exotropia. This condition affects approximately 4 out of every 100 children in the U.S. It results in loss of depth perception and can lead to other visual problems such as Amblyopia.
Commonly called lazy eye, amblyopia occurs when the eyes do not develop properly, resulting in poor vision in one or both eyes. This condition can be caused by a number of reasons, one of which is Strabismus. Approximately 3 out of every 100 children and young adults are affected by this condition.
Visual Rehabilitation for Special Populations
Vision can be compromised as a result of neurological disorders or trauma of the nervous system, such as traumatic brain injuries and concussions, stroke, whiplash, developmental delays, cerebral palsy, and MS.
Sports Vision Difficulties
Strong visual skills are critical to sports success. Not much happens in sports until your eyes instruct your hands and body what to do. Accurate vision and athletic skills can be measured, developed, and enhanced through vision therapy. We measure and successfully improve eye-hand coordination, visual reaction time, peripheral awareness, eye teaming, focusing, tracking, and visualization skills
Individuals who experience the following symptoms or exhibit any of the following behaviors may benefit from Vision Therapy:
- A dislike of reading
- Seeing words that appear to move or float on a page
- Inability to work to one's potential
- Using one's finger as a marker while reading
- Skipping words or losing one's place when reading
- Holding reading material very close or very far away
- Avoiding near tasks
- Blurred vision at near
- Blurred vision at far
- Double vision
- Squinting, eye rubbing, excessive blinking
- Reversing letters, numbers, or words when reading (after 2nd grade)
- Reading slowly
- Closing or covering one eye to see
- Eyes that are not aligned
- Tilting one's head frequently
- Below average reading, comprehension, math, or spelling skills
- Difficulty copying from the board at school
- Poor handwriting
- Avoidance of sports or poor sports performance