Does your child seem smart in everything but school? Does your child show symptoms of learning problems or behavioral problems such as ADD or ADHD? Does your child suffer from headaches after reading or at the end of every school day? They may have a vision related learning disorder!
At Kid's Eye Site our extensive Vision Therapy program gives children the opportunity to help strengthen all aspects of their vision, giving them the tools they need for success in school.
Did you know:
80% of a child's learning depends on vision? If a child is having difficulty seeing properly this could lead to significant learning problems, which in turn may cause them to lose focus, become frustrated and act out.
Most children do not know they have a vision problem so they don't know how to tell you. School screenings may check a part of your child's vision BUT even the most sophisticated school screening misses 1 out of every 3 vision disorder in children.
There is more to sight than seeing 20/20!
When someone sees 20/20 it means they can read small letters from a distance of 20 feet. This measures clearness of sight, and as important as that is, it is just one visual skill that is necessary for academic success. In addition to seeing 20/20 at distance, a child must master other visual skills:
1. Eye Focusing: Children need to focus both eyes to keep a clear image while reading.
2. Eye Teaming: The eyes must aim or point at the same place in space, at the same time.
3. Eye Tracking: The eyes should move smoothly across the page without losing their place.
1 out of 5 children experience problems reading because words become blurry, jumbled, or they see double.
What is Vision Therapy
Vision therapy treats vision problems that cannot be corrected by glasses alone. Vision therapy is similar to physical therapy for the eyes. However it is more than just eye exercises. Vision therapy works on the connections between the eyes and the brain to improve visual skills and abilities.
Vision therapy works to correct or improve specific problems of the vision system such as strabismus (lazy eye), focusing, eye teaming, tracking, and visual information processing. Successful vision therapy makes vision more comfortable, effortless, and efficient for the child. A customized treatment plan of vision therapy activities is designed to meet each child's individual needs, and therapy is performed under doctor supervision.
Vision therapy works to develop or improve the following visual skills:
The ability to effortlessly change focus quickly, without blur, from far to near and from near to far while looking for meaning and obtain understanding from the symbols or objects seen. This ability is used to copy from the chalkboard, to watch the road ahead and check the speedometer, to read a book and watch TV across the room, etc.
2. Eye Teaming
The ability for the eyes to work together as a team. The eyes should be lined up so that no mismatch exists between the two eyes. When a mismatch between the two eyes occurs a child will either have double vision OR will mentally block information from one eye or the other (suppression). Double vision and/or suppression lowers understanding and speed of reading, increasing fatigue, and makes it difficult for
a child to stay on task. Proper eye teaming permits efficient vision to emerge and learning to occur.
The ability to follow a line of print without getting lost on the page. This ability is used to read words from left to right, add columns of numbers, read maps, etc.
The ability to follow a moving object smoothly, accurately and effortlessly with both eyes. This ability is used to follow a ball or a person, to guide a pencil while writing, etc.
5. Depth Perception
The ability to see in depth (3-D). This ability is used when judging distances and navigating through the world. Depth perception is important for any activity involving coordination such as sports, dancing, driving, etc.
6. Visual Information Processing
The visual skills we need to understand, analyze, and interpret what we see. The ability lets us see differences between objects that are similar, recall what we've seen, pick out details without getting confused by the background or surrounding images, visualize a complete whole when given incomplete information or a partial picture, etc.
Vision Therapy Resources
TEDx Talk about how vision therapy can help your student
Great information on vision and learning!
Videos of vision therapy and lists of doctors who perform vision therapy
Example of what a child with eye movement difficulties sees while reading
Convergence Insufficiency Treatment Trial
The American Optometric Assocation has great resources for teachers
Website about convergence insufficiency and problems children with this condition may have.
Information of Depth Perception and Stereovision.
Scientific Studies on Vision and Learning
General Amblyopia Information
Good website to explain eye turns and strabismus
Strabismus and Stereovision Information
Links for Children with Disabilities
Creating a home where your disabled child can thrive.
Home accommodations for the special needs.