Conditions We Treat
A dysfunction in the teaming of the two eyes to align correctly. This visual condition causes many symptoms when reading or doing near work such as eye fatigue or strain, headaches, words coming in and out of focus or a pulling sensation from around the eyes to name a few (see Common Symptoms for more). With CI, the visual system lacks the needed efficiency to comfortably align the eyes to a near relative point including tasks such as reading, homework, computer use, etc. Other visual dysfunctions include Convergence Excess, Divergence Insufficiency and Divergence Excess.
A dysfunction in the movements (motor) of the eyes (oculo). Did you know that right now as you read this sentence your eyes are skipping along these words in a series of jumps to gather the correct information in the correct order? These are eyes movements, and just like any other movement in the body, they can be coordinated or uncoordinated. Loss of place when reading, rereading the same line, poor comprehension, forgetting what you have read, reading slowly - these are all indicators of poor eye tracking or Oculomotor Dysfunction.
An eye turn. One eye may turn in, out, up or down beyond the control of the individual. An eye turn may be in one eye or may alternate between the two. It also may be intermittent, occurring only sometimes, or constant. Historically, surgery was the predominant suggestion to correct this disorder. We disagree with this approach for many reasons, but foremost is because we believe vision occurs in the brain, and the eyes are tools. We believe the answer to Strabismus is teaching the brain correct coordination of the tools, not an alteration of the tools.
We do refer some of our patients out for surgery, providing therapy both before and after the procedure. We see many patients who have had Strabismus surgery (or multiple) that have failed, who find that Vision Therapy is what they needed all along. Yes, the brain is capable of developing the neuro-pathways needed for healthy binocular vision, even into adulthood. Unfortunately, there is still a misconception that if you or your child is over the age of 12, it is too late and that nothing can be done. This is false. Neuroscience research has shown that the brain is capable of forming pathways to correct Strabismus (thanks to neuro-plasticity). It is not too late and we would love to teach you more about it!
Even with the correct prescription, if the eye cannot see 20/25 or better, this is called Amblyopia. With a condition like Amblyopia, you may think that the problem is with the eye, but it's not! The problem lies in the brain's connection
to that eye (or eyes). Amblyopia is an underdevelopment in the brain, not a structural issue with the eye itself. With our Amblyopia patients, we get excited as their therapy progresses because with each step, their acuity improves. Patching has been the technique used to try to improve acuity, but research has shown that this is only part of the solution.
Concussion or Traumatic Brain Injury
Suffering even a mild blow to the head can cause bruising to brain tissue, even if the impact is mild (this includes strokes and seizures). This bruising may not be seen in neuro-imaging as structural damage, but the after effects can wreak havoc on brain function, especially with vision. If you have had a TBI and experience blurred vision, double vision, headaches, trouble concentrating, trouble reading or delayed processing, contact us and schedule an exam to find out how Vision Therapy can help restore your vision.
This is a dysfunction in which the eyes struggle to bring an object into focus and can happen in children as well as adults. Gaining clarity of an object is a background function that should be automatic and immediate, but when it's not, it can be very disorienting and make the individual feel out of control of their vision.
This is poor depth perception. Depth is the perception of the empty space between objects, telling an individual how far away things are from them. This ability is only possible through the effective teaming of both eyes. Each eye must align to the same spot, when this happens, the brain combines and compares both images and voila: depth is perceived.
Suppression of Binocular Vision
Suppression is the brain ignoring the visual feed coming from an eye. This happens when there is an imbalance of clarity between the two images in the eyes. The brain is all about efficiency. This means that when there is an efficient (clear) and inefficient (blurry) image reaching the brain simultaneously, the brain ignores the inefficient image.
1. These conditions must be diagnosed by a licensed Developmental Optometrist. A Developmental Optometrist has the training and equipment to provide a Comprehensive Evaluation where functional vision is evaluated over and above acuity.
2. Your vision is a complex and integrated system. This means that many of these diagnoses accompany one another and are not isolated conditions. For example: having an Amblyopic (low acuity) eye is one condition, but that is not the only hurdle. As a child grows up, an eye with low detail will suppress and not develop teaming ability with the other, nor will it develop efficient mobility. Yes, Amblyopia is present, but with it comes Reduced Stereopsis, Oculomotor Dysfunction, Accommodative Dysfunction and Suppression to name a few.