If your child suffers from a lazy eye or other issues related to eye movement and eye coordination. vision therapy is an important option to consider. It is a type of non-surgical, neurological rehabilitation that works to train the visual system, just as many types physical or occupational therapy would work to improve the strength and usability in affected limbs after a stroke. Since the visual system includes not just the eyes, but also the brain and body, vision therapy can be very complex.
Vision Therapy Often Takes Only 3-24 months To Meet Visual Improvement Goals
It is often surprising to learn that the majority of children who begin vision therapy and adhere to recommendations as to practice exercises, frequent visits, etc. will meet their goals in 3-24 months. It is a short-term therapy that can provide long-term benefits and there is no-one-size fits all recommendation. Because it is goal-oriented, if the therapy is not helping your child, it will not go on indefinitely.
There Are Exceptions To The Guideline About 3-24 Months
Determining an appropriate treatment plan for your child will depend on the type of visual problem they have, its severity and the results of standardized tests that your doctor will require. It is important to note that although many patients gain the maximum benefits in two years or less, rarely it will be necessary to continue vision therapy longer.
Common reasons for that delay include:
Severe vision problems
The desire to avoid eye surgery
Complications of medical treatment
New diagnosis for vision problems
Inaccurate correction of underlying vision problems
For Best Results, Expect "Homework" After Vision Therapy
In the same way that you might expect to review spelling words or check math homework for your child who is struggling with those subjects in school, it is not unusual to be sent home with homework exercises after vision therapy. For instance, if your child has a lazy eye, you may be asked to help them with certain eye exercises, like trying to focus on a distant object with both eyes or the use of appropriate software programs. Another common exercise involves using cards with words to encourage your child's brain to make the proper connections as to left, right, up, down, etc.
Your eye doctor may also be able to recommend appropriate computer programs that can be used at home to further your child's visual goals. In addition, patching the affected eye and using a variety of different types of corrective lenses may also be required.
Discovering that your child has a problem with their vision can be terrifying. Before starting any exercises at home, it is crucial to get an accurate diagnosis and corrective glasses, if needed. Otherwise, your son or daughter is unlikely to improve as quickly as you expect. Discover more about vision therapy by utilizing online resources and speaking to your child's physician.