Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a common diagnosis in children and adults. This condition is characterized by behavioral problems like poor attention (inattention), poor self-control (impulsivity) with or without the ability to sit still (hyperactivity). However, children and adults are often misdiagnosed with ADHD when a vision condition is at the core of these behavior problems.  


Within the classroom, 80% of learning comes through our visual system. That means a significant portion of a student’s ability to succeed relies on their vision system working correctly. If visual skills are highly developed, reading and learning can become effortless. However, when learning becomes difficult, frustrations during homework may surface as well as poor attention/concentration. 

In fact, vision conditions share 15 out of the 18 symptoms used to diagnose ADHD. Since these behaviors are commonly linked with ADHD, many doctors’ misdiagnosis the patient with ADHD and exclude other crucial testings, like a developmental vision evaluation.

These symptoms typically include:

  • Poor attention and concentration
  • Slow at completing tasks
  • Poor reading abilities
  • Problems with math
  • Poor handwriting skills
  • Skipping lines while reading
  • Letter or number reversals
  • Eye discomfort
  • Motion sickness
  • Headaches
  • Double vision
  • Poor tracking
  • Visual confusion
  • Head tilting
  • Clumsiness
  • Closing an eye while reading

The most common vision conditions that are commonly misdiagnosed as ADHD are:


When vision problems exist that lead to ADHD behaviors, developmental vision therapy/rehabilitation can resolve or significantly improve the vision problems experienced by the patient. 

At Wow Vision Therapy, we are a leading developmental and rehabilitative vision therapy practice. Our doctors and board-certified vision therapists treat vision problems with intensive office-based vision therapy for more effective results. We address vision problems with a personalized approach. Each session is one-on-one (therapist-to-patient), conducted under doctor supervision. Our providers utilize the latest technology and methods, including in-office and home-support virtual reality to develop binocular vision and depth perception, making treatment enjoyable and productive. Furthermore, our treatment is designed for all ages. 

Our advanced treatment includes:

  • Visual processing development
  • Oculomotor therapy
  • Accommodation “focusing” development
  • Binocular vision therapy
  • Visual imagery therapy
  • Visual-motor integration development
  • Visual-vestibular integration development


After treatment, our patients improve their:

  • Academic performance
  • Reading and handwriting
  • Visual memory
  • Work performance
  • Attention and concentration
  • Confidence
  • Sports


To learn more, please fill out the form below and one of our Patient Care Coordinators will be in touch to answer your questions or help schedule an evaluation for you.

Additional Resources

The following links are to blog posts that feature more information:

New research shows evidence – Emotional and ADD-like behavior problems in children linked to common vision problem

Accommodation’s 3-A’s…The Triple Play for Reading and Learning

Visual Tracking and Academic Performance – Part 1

My child says reading is no fun…what would Dr. Seuss have done?

ADD/ADHD…the vision connection and the drug-free treatment of choice

Why all children with ADD/ADHD or adverse academic behaviors should have a binocular vision examination

Misdiagnosing Learning Disabilities | VisionHelp

Is it ADD or a Vision Problem? | Wow Vision Therapy

20/20 Isn't Everything - A Child's Vision Is Critical to Learning | Richard Maharaj

How 3D Movies Identify Vision Problems | Wow Vision Therapy