What is Vision Therapy?

vision therapyVision therapy is a series of exercises and activities designed to improve the function of the patient’s visual system. It’s all about efficiency. Consider reading for a moment, if you have to think about every little thing that you’re doing while you’re reading, then it will be difficult to concentrate on comprehension or remembering what you have read.

For example, if you have to think about your eyes are tracking along the line of print so you don’t lose your place and skip over the words and lines when you are reading, then you are not thinking about “what does this passage mean?” Likewise, if you have to concentrate on keeping the letter in focus so that you can see them clearly while reading, this makes it more difficult to remember what you have just read.

In addition, the effort it takes to keep your eyes to track along the line, or keeping your eyes focused while you read, will quickly tire you out. Thus you are not able to sustain reading for long periods of time before you want to quit. So your stamina ultimately suffers. Vision therapy helps improve your stamina, and can help with a variety of different vision maladies that you may be experiencing.

What is Vision therapy

In vision therapy we start with activities that are easy to do and gradually change them so that they become more and more complex as time goes on. The goal is to gradually increase the difficulty as the patient’s skills develop and to continue to practice those skills until they are proficient and automatic. Vision therapy is highly effective approach where both parents and patients notice significant differences inside of each procedure as they practice their visual activities more and more.

How long before there are noticeable changes?

Generally, it takes about between 6 to 8 weeks to notice changes outside of the therapy sessions. For example, most parents will notice that their child’s stamina for homework and reading will increase at about this time. Additionally adults in therapy often notice fewer headaches within the 6-8 weeks period. A full treatment program in vision therapy may take several months, but we expect every parent or patient to notice changes in about 6 to 8 weeks.

Low vision

If someone has lost enough of their eyesight that they have trouble accomplishing everyday tasks, they have low vision. With low vision, someone may find it difficult or impossible to read, shop, watch television, or to recognize faces. Having low vision is a complex problem, but fortunately there are ways to help people accomplish their daily activities and regain their independence. To better understand low vision, we need to know what different aspect of our vision are which enables us to see the world clearly.

  • Central vision

Central vision is the vision we use when we look directly at something, it gives us the greatest detail for reading print or recognizing faces.

  • Peripheral vision

Peripheral vision is the vision we use to see everything around the edges. While not detailed as central, peripheral vision is important in getting around.

  • Depth Perception

Is the ability to judge the position of object in space, such as foreground and background objects.

Causes of low vision

There are many causes of low vision and difference causes affect different aspects of our sights. For example macular degeneration affects central vision.

  • Diabetic retinopathy can affect central or peripheral vision
  • Glaucoma affects peripheral vision first
  • Strokes can affect one side of peripheral vision
  • All eye problems can decrease contrast sensitivity.
  • Vision loss in one eye can affect depth perception

Low vision rehabilitation

Vision rehabilitation helps people learn new strategies using new techniques and devices to complete daily activities so that patients can regain confidence and independence. In some conditions, such as macular degeneration a blind spot known as a scotoma obscures part of the central vision, in these cases a person may be trained to use off centered vision to see print or objects more clearly.

Rehabilitation Aids

  • Obstacle aids
  • Making things brighter
  • Making things bigger
  • Organizing clutter
  • Labeling
  • Using sounds such as talking watches, clocks
  • Books on tape

Dr. Rosa Optometry always encourages regular eye exams because important to diagnose conditions that can be treated and to start the vision rehabilitation process if needed. Please visit or call to set up an appointment at Dr. Rosa Optometry and let us show you why we are the best eye specialists in Escondido and the greater San Diego region.