Some of the most common vision symptoms are.
- Blurred print
- Print moves when reading
- Skip words when reading along the line
- Losing your place when looking from the book to the board and back again
- Need to re-read the sentence for comprehension
Many children who struggle in school have never had a vision evaluation and may be suffering needlessly. Smart, intelligent children who don’t perform up to their expectations are prime candidates for hidden vision problems.
Vision Therapy is a series of exercises and procedures which are designed to improve the performance of the Visual System – not just eyesight! It’s all about efficiency and not having to think and concentrate on the words or about print moving. When this happens, we are not able to think about what we have just read.
- The ability to follow a moving object smoothly, accurately, and effortlessly with both eyes and at the same time think, talk, read or listen without losing alignment of eyes. This pursuit ability is used to follow a ball, to guide a pencil while writing, to read symbols on moving objects, etc.
- The ability to accurately aim the eyes on a series of stationary objects quickly, with both eyes, and at the same time identify what each object is. This is a skill used to read words from left to right, add columns of numbers, read maps, etc.
- The ability to change focus quickly, without blur, from far to near and from near to far, over, and over, effortlessly and at the same time obtain meaning and 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 or watch TV from across the room.
- The ability to use two eyes together. This is very important in ensuring a balanced even performance when viewing objects at a near distance. When this skill is deficient, fatigue, distractibility and shortened attention span often results.
- Being able to keep peripheral information in your conscious awareness while paying attention to detail immediately ahead of you (that’s what happens when we drive!)
Efficient vision is dependent on the ability to see rapidly, to see and recognise an object, or words in a small fraction of a second. The less time required to see, the faster the reading and thinking.
- The ability to see depth. A child should be able to catch a ball as it is thrown towards them. to judge the visual distance and control the arm movement needed. An adult, when driving, needs to see and judge how far it is to the kerb, make accurate decisions about the speed and distances of other cars to be safe.
The above information which is essential for efficient learning will not work to a satisfactory level if the previously mentioned essential visual skills are working below satisfactory levels.
For more details, view our glossary of terms.