Most people have heard of physical therapy, occupational therapy and speech language therapy. However, a relatively common question asked of me is, “Dr. Fortenbacher, even though I’ve had my child’s eyes examined before, why have I never heard of vision therapy?”
The fact is research shows us the most common vision problems found in children are those that involve blurred vision and require corrective lenses. The second most common vision problems found in children are those involving eye teaming, tracking and focusing. Furthermore, research shows that these relatively common visual problems found in children, respond effectively to office-based optometric vision therapy.
Vision therapy is a core curriculum in every College of Optometry in the US.åÊ It is part of the National Examination Boards. The most common reason for parents not hearing about vision therapy is, unless the patient has complaints, the doctor may not do the necessary tests to identify these problems. The child’s condition can be missed.
It is important that doctors ask the right questions of their patients. For example, every child’s history should include a series of questions about school, reading and overall academic performance. Then the necessary tests should be done to probe these areas.
Only when a patient has been identified with a condition that requires vision therapy will they have an opportunity to hear about vision therapy. For more information about these vision problems that can be helped with vision therapy please go to the College of Optometrists in Vision Development website: www.covd.org and learn more about Optometry’s Best Kept Secret!
Dan L. Fortenbacher, O.D,,FCOVD