This August marks the 20th year National Children’s Vision and Learning Month. It was started in1995 with a presidential proclamation from Bill Clinton to help parents and educators understand that undiagnosed vision problems can block learning and lead to years of unnecessary struggling.
Trouble in School? Maybe it’s a learning-related vision problem
Vision is a complex process that involves over 20 visual abilities and more than 65% of all the pathways to the brain. 1 in 4 children has an undiagnosed vision problem which can interfere with learning and lead to academic and/or behavioral problems. However, it is important to know that these children frequently do not report symptoms because they think everyone sees the same way they do.
Often a child with a vision-based learning problem has excellent verbal skills, causing parents and educators to think the child must be lazy, have ADD/ADHD, or is learning disabled. The possible misdiagnosis can be due to similar symptoms, but the causes are not the same.
Vision is more than 20/20
Unfortunately, parents and educators often incorrectly assume that if a child passes a school vision screening, then there is no vision problem. However, school vision screenings often only test for visual acuity. In reality, the vision skills needed for successful reading and learning are much more complex. A child who can see 20/20 can still have a vision problem.
**OCVT provides vision and learning screenings for Austin and San Antonio area schools as part of our outreach initiative. These screenings test for eye teaming, eye focusing, and eye tracking skills in addition to the areas tested on a school screener. Please contact Allie McIver firstname.lastname@example.org for further information regarding these screenings and how to get your school involved.
Common signs that a vision problem may be interfering with your student’s ability to read and learn are:
- Skips lines, rereads lines
- Poor reading comprehension
- Takes much longer doing homework than it should take
- Reverses letters like “b” into “d” when reading
- Has a short attention span with reading and schoolwork
- Headaches, eye strain
With school right around the corner it is important that children receive comprehensive eye exams. If a child has an undiagnosed ocular problem it can affect their performance in school and sports. OCVT offers no cost complimentary consultations with Neuro-Developmental Optometrist, Dr.Briana Larson, the lone practicing optometrist in the state of Texas with her set of credentials. OCVT is proud to have a team of highly qualified and trained doctors and vision therapists who have successfully helped many patients with vision-related learning problems achieve success in school. To see if you or your family member could benefit from OCVT’s services please contact us at the contact information listed below.