Learning Obstacles

Vision Issues, Pt I

Dr. Gary Polan, an optometrist who specializes in Sport Vision, Vision Therapy, and Developmental Vision in Pacific Palisades, California, sent me a list of symptoms that can often be alleviated by vision therapy (It is important to keep in mind that a child may experience a hand full of these signs…not all of them. My son had about seven from this list and then others didn’t apply to him at all. For example, he has amazing printing and athletic skills, but his eyes would get all puffy and glassy after reading, and he would skip lines/lose his place. I also feel that the areas he is strong in were heightened by the visual therapy.):

List of Symptoms:

Headaches during or after near work

Blurred vision

Double vision

After reading, having distance vision momentarily blurred

Visual fatigue

Getting sleepy when reads

Confuses letter or words

Difficulty concentrating

Concentration decline as reading continues

Loses place when reads

Skips or rereads or uses finger to keep place

Reverses letters or words

Vocalizes when reads silently

Slow reader

Poor reading comprehension

Covers or closes one eye while reading

Excessive head movement

Head tilt

Holds reading close

Frowns or squints

Rubs or blinks eyes excessively

Poor handwriting

Poor general body coordination

Erratic skills in athletics

Desire to improve athletic performance

To find a behavioral optometrist in your area, one who understands developmental and functional optometry, log on to www.oepf.org.  At the top of the page is a title that says, “Find an Optometrist.” Click “find an OEP professional near you” on the drop-down menu and input your city/state/zip code to start your search. 

You can also write to the OEP Foundation at: 1921 East Carnegie Avenue Suite 3-L, Santa Ana, CA 92705-5510.  Also, if you go on the website and click on the left-hand side, either on “educators,” “patients and parents,” or the other categories, you can read the latest research and statements made by the American Academy of Optometry and the American Optometric Association.