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Vision Therapy

What is Vision Therapy?

Vision therapy is a supervised, non-surgical, and customizable program of visual activities designed to correct certain vision problems and improve visual skills that cannot be treated successfully with eyeglasses, contact lenses, or surgery alone.  

It has been widely accepted for years that the visual pathway in the brain is fully developed at a young age.  Recent studies have found that the brain has a significant amount of neuroplasticity, which is the ability of the brain to change its structure and function in response to external stimuli.  This neuroplasticity isn’t just happening for young children either, adults have been shown to have a significant amount of neuroplasticity.  A vision therapy program designed for the patient can correct vision problems and improve visual performance through neurological changes.

Who Can Benefit from Vision Therapy?

Certain vision problems can be corrected with vision therapy.  These vision problems include:

  • Amblyopia
    • Reduced vision in an eye due to abnormal visual development
    • May be due to an eye turn or a large change in prescription between the two eyes
  • Strabismus
    • Muscle imbalance of the eyes that causes one or both eyes to turn in or out
    • Not all types of strabismus can be corrected with vision therapy
  • Accommodative Disorders
    • Accommodation is the focusing of the eye
    • The eye can either over-focus, under-focus, or have spasms of focusing
  • Computer Vision Syndrome
    • Eye and vision related problems that result from prolonged computer, tablet, and cell phone use
  • Convergence Insufficiency
    • Inability to bring the eyes together, and maintain that, with close work
      • Symptoms:
        • Headache
        • Eyestrain
        • Fatigue
        • Double vision
  • Other Binocular Vision Problems
    • Phorias can also cause a considerable amount of eye strain and headaches
    • Phorias are a small misalignment of the eyes that do not cause a noticeable eye turn

What are the Common Symptoms That Can Arise from These Vision Problems?

Many of the symptoms of vision problems may be attributed to another aspect of the person’s life, whether it be an outdated prescription, being stressed at work, or being tired at the end of the day.  To see if your daily life is affected by these vision problems, fill out our Predictive Checklist and Lifestyle Checklist on our forms page.

Once you have these forms filled out, Dr. Broberg will review them and schedule you for a visual efficiency evaluation.

Traumatic Brain Injury, Concussions, and the Possible Effects on your Vision

As a result of a concussion, the visual pathway from the eyes to the brain may be disrupted.  Numerous symptoms may manifest because of this disruption, while some of these symptoms may go away over time, this may not always be the case. These visual symptoms may be resolved through proper intervention such as prescribing glasses with prisms or completing a vision therapy program.

The three most common visual symptoms of concussions are accommodative insufficiency,

convergence insufficiency, and oculomotor dysfunction, as explained below. These three

symptoms respond very well to vision therapy. Vision therapy exercises are prescribed by an optometrist to improve visual skills without the use of surgery. The number of visits a patient receives is determined by the optometrist which is based on the patient’s visual deficiencies. The therapy occurs in the office and lasts approximately one hour, and is performed 1-2 times per week.

Some of the most common visual side effects of concussions are:

  • Accommodative insufficiency
    • Trouble with maintaining focus with close up work
    • May be a constant or intermittent blur with close up work
  • Blurry vision
    • Can occur at distance, close up, or both
  • Convergence insufficiency
    • Inability to bring the eyes together with close work
      • Symptoms:
        • Headache
        • Eyestrain
        • Fatigue
        • Double vision
  • Double vision
    • Can occur at various times throughout the day
  • Light sensitivity
  • Oculomotor dysfunction
    • Unable to follow a moving object accurately
    • Unable to quickly shift eyes back and forth
  • Reduced visual processing speed or reaction time

If you have had a concussion in the past, fill out our Persistent Post-Concussive Syndrome on our forms page.  Once completed, Dr. Broberg will review the survey and schedule you for a visual efficiency evaluation.

For more information on concussions and the effects it has on vision, visit the following websites:

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