Once the senses are gone, they don’t come back. At least, that used to be the consensus.
About 6.8% of children in the US receive a diagnosis for some level of vision impairment. Based on a number of factors such as the cost of healthcare and economic hardship, many children grow up without corrected vision. Given how crucial vision is to a child’s development, this can cause significant detriment to their education.
While the idea has spread around our society that hearing or vision are set and can’t improve, the opposite is actually true. Poor vision as a result of amblyopia (lazy eye), strabismus (crossed eyes), and other conditions is in fact something you can correct and improve.
All it takes is vision therapy.
What is vision therapy, and how will it benefit those who suffer from vision impairment? Read on for more on how this process can bring back your quality of life.
The Consequences of Vision Impairment
Believe it or not, poor vision isn’t just an issue when Velma can’t find her glasses. When you consider how crucial your vision is to all aspects of your everyday life, it’s easy to see how impairing it would flip your world upside down.
Diagnosis is crucial, and many children don’t realize that they have poor vision. The signs of poor vision in a child may register as a lack of interest in classroom participation and homework. They may struggle with basic reading skills and have difficulty with hand-eye coordination.
Children with uncorrected vision may also experience the following:
- A difficulty changing between different focuses
- Poor handwriting
- Difficulty spelling and writing numbers
- Poor depth perception
- Lack of attention
As mentioned above, children suffer serious consequences to their education and development when they cannot see clearly. Many children may fall behind several grade levels until they get correction.
Many people from a young age might skip eye exams believing that their eyesight will self-correct over time, and then suffer from poor eyesight their entire life.
Given how important a person’s developmental years are, this can lead to lifelong consequences that may crop up in very unfortunate ways.
Vision Therapy Is for All Ages
Further, eyesight gets worse with age. It’s tempting to forego vision therapy believing that you’re “too old” to correct your vision. If the rest of your body is in decline, why bother trying to fix what is going to break down, anyway?
The benefits of vision therapy are for you! It’s never too late to correct your vision.
What Is Vision Therapy?
Vision therapy is designed to train your eyes and brain to work better in image processing. This isn’t about strengthening your ocular muscles or improving the speed with which you focus. This is about honing your mind’s visual processing.
To put it simply, you’re training the neurological pathways in your gray matter that control your eyes so that there is better communication between the optical nerve and the vision centers. Just as a good habit can be ingrained into your mind, vision therapy can train your brain and eyes to work better in tandem.
How Does it Work?
Vision therapy consists of progressive vision exercises. An optometrist will administer them to you in sessions lasting from 30 minutes up to 1 hour. These will be regular sessions at least once per week until you regain your healthy vision.
It’s important to keep in mind that sometimes eyeglasses are not the only solution. You can’t solve an issue in visual processing just by slapping on some new lenses with an updated prescription. Vision therapy seeks to address neuronal causes of vision impairment, rather than physical causes like near-sightedness or astigmatism.
However, some physical conditions can lead to these neuronal issues. This is why it’s important to get a comprehensive eye exam from an optometrist that you can trust. Only once you’ve allowed a professional to examine your eyes can you determine if vision therapy might be right for you.
What Conditions Can Vision Therapy Treat?
Vision therapy can help with a number of physical eye conditions, in addition to the aforementioned image processing issues. If you have one of the following issues but glasses or contacts have not corrected the problem, then you should find an optometrist near you for a vision therapy evaluation.
The following are common issues that lead to vision impairment:
- Double vision
- Strabismus (crossed eyes)
- Amblyopia (the lazy eye)
Further, vision therapy is there to help those who have suffered a decline in their visual acuity with age. It’s important not to view vision therapy as just a way to solve image processing issues before a child grows into adulthood. It’s a solution for people of all ages.
How Long Until You See Results?
The benefits of vision therapy can take anywhere from a few weeks to as long as six months. Keep in mind, this is all variable. The severity of your condition and the level of vision impairment will affect how long it takes you to get the healthy vision you’ve always wanted.
Patience is a virtue! It may be discouraging if you don’t see any change within the first week or two. But as long as you diligently attend your therapy sessions, you’re guaranteed to get results.
Finding an Optometrist Near You
If you have a visual impairment, it never hurts to get in contact with the best optometrist in Houston, Texas. A free consultation can help you to decide what pathway you have to take to get back the vision you need.
Life is short, and the senses are what make it most worth living. If you or someone you love could benefit from vision therapy, then get in contact with a professional and regain the healthy vision you deserve!