Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Vision problems can have drastic effects on brain development and learning

Undiagnosed vision problems are a major problem in our society. And the most serious problems cannot be found in a simple school vision screenings or the kind of screening done in an pediatrician's office. An excellent article that appeared in the Livingston Daily explains the issue very well. Here is an excerpt:

When a child struggles with reading, learning can be challenging. How can you help?
If you are like most parents, you have already checked their vision ... or have you? People often assume that if their child sees the letters on the eye chart when tested by the nurse or at the pediatrician's office, then they have all of the skills that are needed for reading and learning.
Most people don't realize that the standard eye-chart test does not uncover all potential vision problems. In fact, having 20/20 eyesight simply means that one can see a certain size letter at a distance of 20 feet. However, measuring visual acuity alone may not uncover other serious vision problems. Vision is a much more complex process that involves many different visual skills.
Undiagnosed vision problems can make it difficult for a child to make sense out of what they read. They then do poorly on written tests. This can lead parents and educators to think that the child is just lazy, not trying hard enough, or may have a learning disability, such as ADHD.
One of the most important steps a parent can take is to schedule a developmental vision evaluation even if your child has had previous vision exams or screenings.
Undiagnosed vision problems can make it difficult for a child to make sense out of what they are reading, causing poor performance on written tests.
According to neurologists Drs. Fernette and Brock Eide in their new book “The Mislabeled Child,” if a child has a vision problem it can have “drastic effects on brain development, learning, and thinking if it prevents the flow of accurate information to the brain.” Too often parents assume that if a child passes a vision screening that everything is fine with their eyes, and that couldn't be further from the truth.
Read the whole article here: 
To learn more about vision problems that can't be fixed with lenses and need the intervention of a developmental optometrist visit or

There has been research recently on the connection between ADHD and eye movement problems such as convergence insufficiency. Click here to learn more.

If you are interested in vision and learning, click here.