Some visual conditions cannot be treated adequately with just glasses, contact lenses and/or patching, and are best resolved through a program of Vision Therapy.
What is Vision Therapy?
As defined in a Joint Organizational Policy Statement of the American Academy of Optometry and the American Optometric Association, vision therapy is a sequence of activities individually prescribed and monitored by the doctor to develop efficient visual skills and processing. Vision Therapy sessions include procedures designed to enhance the brain's ability to control:
Visual-motor skills and endurance are developed through the use of specialized computer and optical devices, including therapeutic lenses, prisms, and filters. During the final stages of therapy, the patient's newly acquired visual skills are reinforced and made automatic through repetition and by integration with motor and cognitive skills.
Who Benefits from Vision Therapy?
Children and adults with visual challenges, such as:
Learning-related Vision Difficulties:
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.).
To learn more about learning-related vision difficulties, visit these web pages:
Poor Binocular Coordination:
Vision Therapy helps individuals develop normal coordination and teamwork of the two eyes (binocular vision). When the two eyes fail to work together as an effective team, performance in many areas can suffer (reading, sports, depth perception, eye contact, etc.).
To learn more about binocular vision, visit these web pages:
Strabismus (crossed eyes, eye turns) and Amblyopia (decreased vision, "Lazy Eye"):
Vision Therapy programs offer much higher cure rates for strabismus and amblyopia compared to eye surgery, glasses, and/or patching. The earlier the patient receives Vision Therapy the better, however, our office successfully treats adult patients.
Recent scientific research has disproved the long held belief that children with amblyopia can not be helped after age 7.
To learn more about crossed eyes, eye turns, or lazy eye, visit these web pages:
Thomas's strabimsus surgery for his esotropia at age 1 did not go as planned. After surgery his began to turn out. Since beginning vision therapy he now has control over his eye and has achieved some depth perception.
Visual Rehabilitation for Special Needs - Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI), Stroke, Birth Injury, Brain Damage, Head Injury, Whiplash, Cerebral Palsy, MS:
Vision can be compromised as a result of neurological disorders or trauma to the nervous system. Vision Therapy can effectively treat the visual consequences of brain trauma (including double vision).
To learn more about visual rehabilitation with vision therapy, visit these web pages:
Stress-induced Difficulties - Blurred Vision, Eyestrain, Headaches, Dizziness:
21st century life demands more from our vision than ever before. Many children and adults constantly use their near vision at school, work, and home. Environmental stresses on the visual system (including excessive computer use or close work) can induce blurred vision, eyestrain, headaches, etc.
To learn about vision therapy for these problems, visit these web pages:
Visual Rehabilitation for Special Needs - Developmental Delays, Visual Perceptual and Visual-Motor Deficits, Attention Deficit Disorders, Autism Spectrum Disorders:
To learn more about vision therapy as it relates to developmental delays or disorders, visit these web pages:
Sports Vision Improvement:
Strong visual skills are critical to sports success. Not much happens in sports until your eyes instruct your hands and body as to what to do! Accurate vision and athletic visual skills can be measured, developed, and enhanced through Vision Therapy. We can measure and successfully improve eye-hand coordination, visual reaction time, peripheral awareness, eye teaming, focusing, tracking, and visualization skills (to mention just a few).
Vision Therapy can be the answer to many visual problems. Do not hesitate to contact our office with any questions.
StephanieL Wolman, OD,FCOVD