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Over 25% of School
Aged Children Have
Visual Issues that
Affect Learning

Vision Therapy At Bolton, CA Optometrists

Our Bolton, CA optometrists specialize in vision therapy and the treatment of learning-related vision problems are sometimes called behavioral optometrists or developmental optometrists.

Vision Training or Vision Therapy also called orthoptics is an individualized program for the treatment of non-refractive vision problems.

Eye exercises and tasks are tailored to the child's specific vision problem. The therapy can be performed in an optometrist’s office with additional visual tasks that the child will need to perform daily at home.

Our Optometrists, have extensive experience providing vision therapy for children and adults, with incredible results.

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Children Learning Disorders, & Vision

Vision problems in children, other than simple refractive errors such as nearsightedness, farsightedness and astigmatism are not uncommon. These issues can cause significant behavioral and learning challenges for children.

Often, these challenges manifest in ways that are often confused with

  • Dyslexia
  • ADD
  • ADHD
  • Reading Problems
  • Poor focus
  • Amblyopia (“lazy eye”)
  • Eye Alignment
  • Visual Perceptual Disorders

and can result in misdiagnosis, all requiring vision therapy. If children exhibiting these symptoms receive a negative diagnosis, left untreated, these non-refractive vision problems can cause learning problems, fatigue, eyestrain and headaches. If you are concerned about your student or child, schedule a developmental eye exam with our optometrist and Vision Therapy doctor today!

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Eliminating Glasses With Vision Therapy?

Vision therapy is NOT the same as self-help programs that claim to reduce refractive errors and the need for glasses. There is no scientific evidence that these "throw away your glasses" programs work, and most eye care specialists agree they are a hoax.

In contrast, vision therapy is approved by the Ontario Association of Optometrists (OAO) for the treatment of non-refractive vision problems, and there are many studies that demonstrate its effectiveness.

However, Not every vision problem can be helped with vision therapy. Children that can be helped must adhere to the established vision program. The degree of success with vision therapy is determined by a number of factors. The patient’s age and his level of motivation are key factors. As important is the patient's performance of all eye exercises and visual tasks correctly. Furthermore, the type and severity of the vision problem are taken into account when evaluating the level of improvement with vision therapy.

Convergence Insufficiency

This near-vision problem is the leading cause of eyestrain, blurry vision, and double vision.
Research demonstrates that the traditional focus exercise often called "pencil pushups" are ineffective.

The only consistently effective treatment for convergence insufficiency is Vision Therapy.

A study of almost 700 5th and 6th graders indicated that convergence insufficiency is much more common than many assumed.

With 13% of students having CI, as well as demonstrating that of the children who showed three signs of CI, 79% where classified as being accommodative insufficient as well.

Special Needs & Vision

Special needs such as autism, cerebral palsy, down syndrome, and other conditions often mean a child struggles with hand-eye-coordination. Children with these challenges, or anything else requiring occupational therapy, is very likely to gain immensely from Vision Therapy. A regimen of customized focus and perception exercises will improve depth perception and fine motor skills.

  • 45% of patients with down syndrome have strabismus/cross eye
  • As many as 40% of autistic people have strabismus/cross eye
  • Estimates of the incidence of strabismus in children with cerebral palsy go as high as 88%, Vision Therapy has shown to be effective for children with cerebral palsy.

Strabismus & Amblyopia

Strabismus and Amblyopia are forms of visual acuity problems that persist even with prescription lenses. In order to avoid double-vision, the eyes will often be misaligned resulting being "cross-eyed" or a "lazy eye". This not only makes it difficult to see and coordinate effectively, it can also be socially devastating.

The traditional treatment has been patching, which contemporary research has found to be only partially effective at best, completely ineffective at worst.

Unlike patching, Vision Therapy has consistently found to be an effective treatment for strabismus and amblyopia, resulting in sustained and significant improvement.

Over 80% of learning is visual: 3 in 4 children with reading disabilities are affected by visual dysfunction.

Learning Disability & Vision: What Does The Research Say?

Connection: Learning Disabilities & Vision

60% of learning disabled students failed two or more binocular vision tests according to research by the Waterloo School of Optometry.

The study was performed on students who had never received an eye exam and did not wear glasses or contacts. The research confirmed that children with learning disabilities, especially reading related learning disabilities have an extremely strong chance of having binocular issues (problems with the eye working together).

How Many Students Have Binocular Vision Problems?

According to research performed by The AAO 32% of university students had Binocular Vision Issues.
The conclusion of this study is:

"Because these dysfunctions have a negative effect on performance, appropriate vision evaluation for this population is extremely important.

In this study 31% of the students needed Vision Therapy for symptoms such as eye strain, double vision and headaches.

Vision Therapy: Reading & Dyslexia

Reading is the perfect example of a complex visual task that requires skills such as eye tracking and focusing (accommodation), eye teaming and coordination (Binocularity).

According to Dr. Debra Walhof M.D, member of the National Center for Learning Disabilities. "It is important to remember that normal sight may not necessarily be synonymous with normal vision..." Learn more about reading and vision therapy.

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Vision Therapy is used to improve vision skills such as eye movement control, eye focusing and coordination, and the teamwork of the two eyes. It involves a series of procedures carried out under professional supervision, usually by a specially-trained optometrist.

Vision Therapy can be prescribed when a comprehensive eye examination indicates that it is an appropriate treatment option for the patient. The specific program of therapy is based on the results of standardized tests, the needs of the patient, and the patient's signs and symptoms.

Programs typically involve eye exercises and the use of lenses, prisms, filters, occluders, specialized instruments, and computer programs. The course of therapy, which may take from several weeks to several months, is closely monitored by the therapist.

 

The following is a video by Susan Barry, PhD about her experience with Vision Therapy:

This video is more comprehensive and goes into a lot more detail about the visual process:

Here is another great video which explains what 3D movies can tell you about your vision: