Vision therapy is an individualized program of prescribed activities using specialized instruments and computer technology to retrain deficient visual skills. Through repetition and intensity, the improved and developed skills become automatic and transfer to everyday function that impact academic, work and sports performance. It is the treatment of choice for diagnosed visual disorders that contribute to reading and learning difficulties. OCVT’s vision therapy treatment program consists of Doctor prescribed one-on-one in clinic sessions directed by a highly trained vision therapist. To reinforce the developed skills in clinic, a specialized program of activities are implemented at home. Regular progress evaluations monitor progress and modify treatments as needed. The Vision Therapy program duration is dependent on severity levels of performance on standardized testing, signs and symptoms and each patient’s individual needs. The program can vary from a few to several months.
Will Insurance cover Vision Therapy treatments? Vision and eye care insurance plans that cover eye examinations, eye glasses or contact lenses do not provide coverage for Vision Therapy/Rehabilitation treatments. Vision Therapy or Vision Rehabilitation is used to treat diagnosed vision disorders & conditions. In many cases, Vision Therapy/Rehabilitation is the only available treatment for these disorders & conditions. Treatments may be partially covered under major medical Insurance. However, most Insurance companies and managed care plans may deny or place severe limits on coverage for vision therapy services. Your major medical insurance company may partially cover our Vision Therapy related services and we encourage you to seek reimbursement. To assist you, we will provide you with a detailed invoice with the procedural codes to submit with your claim. Prior to treatment, upon request and based on our initial consultation, we will provide you with procedural codes of the potential treatment program to allow you to have preliminary coverage discussions with your insurance company. It is the responsibility of the patient or patient’s parents/guardians to contact and have discussions with their insurance company and ultimately file their insurance claim. It is recommended that you do not allow Insurance Companies to make arbitrary decisions that prevent you or your child from receiving the required and appropriate treatment. As always, OCVT’s commitment is to provide the best vision therapy care service with YOU the patient as the focus of our practice. Is OCVT In Network or Out of Network Provider? The Optometry Center for Vision Therapy (OCVT) is an out of network provider for all insurance coverage. Out of Network coverage is usually paid at a different rate than In Network coverage. We are not under any contract or discount program with any insurance provider. You are responsible for full payment of services and when there is insurance coverage, you will receive reimbursement from your insurance company directly. As a specialty optometric practice, being an Out of Network Provider enables OCVT to optimally allocate its optometric vision therapy expertise and resources thus providing our patients with the highest quality optometric vision therapy care. If denied coverage, can a review/appeal be requested? Under all forms of major medical Insurance plans, you have a right to request a review of any service that is denied coverage or for which coverage is severely limited. If you believe that your claim was incorrectly evaluated or the decision for coverage was made arbitrarily or unfairly, you should consider requesting a review. To determine how to file for an appeal, you should contact your insurance carrier.
For most patients who complete their vision therapy programs, the abatement of signs and symptoms and the resolution of their visual problems are long-term. The everyday use of the acquired vision skills from the vision therapy program is self-reinforcing and becomes automatic. Some patients may require some level of vision therapy maintenance.
Absolutely, whether the individual’s vision system disorders were deficiencies or conditions from periods when they were much younger or acquired just recently. With neurological plasticity, there is no age limit for the further stimulation and development of a person’s neuro-pathways and neurological system. Adults can definitely benefit from vision therapy.
A developmental optometrist is an optometrist who specializes and provides services related to visual skills and visual function. This optometrist may or may not be AAO Certified (FAAO), COVD board certified (FCOVD), a Fellow of NORA (FNORA) or certified in the completion of a Residency in vision therapy and rehabilitation.
Learning-related vision problems are not detectable by a school vision screening and can be overlooked during a typical and limited eye examination.
Teachers are often the first ones to observe an undetected vision problem in children because you see them under the conditions of prolonged visual demands in the classroom. Vision problems can affect children in different ways. An over-achieving student with a vision problem may have to work twice as hard as a child with a strong visual system. On the contrary, a struggling student with an undetected vision problem may misbehave to avoid visual discomfort when reading or doing schoolwork.
Research shows that children diagnosed with ADHD, Dyslexia, Developmental Delays, or Learning Problems have a higher incidence of learning-related vision problems. It is recommended that any child who is struggling in school have a thorough vision evaluation.
Early detection can save years of struggling.
A typical student is engaged in learning through vision 80% of the school day and will exhibit some common symptoms if they have learning-related vision difficulties. Some common symptoms are the following:
Appearance of the eyes:
- Eyes crossed or turning in, out or moving independently of each other
- Red, watering eyes, or encrusted eyelids
- Dislike or avoidance of close work
- Short attention span
- Using finger or marker when reading
- Difficulty completing assignments on time
- Difficulty remembering what was read
- Reversals of letters or words
Complaints associated with usage of the eyes:
- Headaches, nausea and dizziness
- Blurring of the vision
- Burning or itching eyes
To assist teachers in the pre-screening and early detection of learning-related vision problems, a pre-screening form is provided.
It depends; there are many causes of reading difficulties with vision problems being one of them.
Vision is a key component involved in reading. In addition to eye tracking, teaming and focusing skills, higher visual processing skills are needed. For visual processing of the text, word recognition, recall, and comprehension, your child needs developed skills in visual discrimination, attention, memory, and visualization. These skills should be automatic, but for individuals with visual deficiencies excess energy is exerted on the visual mechanics of reading and comprehension suffers.
To determine if your child’s reading struggles are related to vision, a thorough vision evaluation is recommended.
There are many signs that an individual is struggling from a visual processing problem and the signs can vary depending on the individual. Some of the key things to watch for include but are not limited to:
- Confuses similar words
- Reverses numbers (6 and 9) and letters (b and d)
- Reverses words (was/saw)
- Transposes letters or numbers (12/21)
- Confuses right and left
- Poor spelling abilities
- Overlooks small details (reads “beak” for “break”)
- Improved comprehension when read to
- Vocalizes or moves lips when reading silently
- Difficulty following verbal instructions
- Difficulty with math concepts
- Difficulty completing assignments in a reasonable length of time
- Fails to recognize same word in next sentence or page
- Difficulty recalling what was read
- Writes neatly but slowly
- Difficulty copying from the board/paper/book/computer screen
- Misaligns digits or columns when doing math
- Poor printing/handwriting
If you, your child or someone you know suffers from any of these signs and symptoms, a processing evaluation may need to be completed in order to rule out any visual processing problems.
Behavior problems can be the result of many factors, including undetected visual problems. Vision deficiencies can cause students to get frustrated or bored in school because he or she has trouble seeing the board, seeing the teacher, reading a book, or processing the information in order to complete an assignment. Therefore, students will act out or misbehave in the classroom because the demands are too high for their visual systems.
Learning related vision problems are not exclusive to school-aged children. Many adults suffer from learning-related vision problems and have struggled their entire lives. These individuals have learned to cope with these deficiencies in order to be able to function at the level at which they are required. It is never too late to begin to develop these skills in order to increase the level at which you function.
OCVT Pecan Park
10601 Pecan Park Blvd, suite 201 Austin, TX 78750
Phone: (512) 401-0400
6836 Bee Caves Road, suite 100 Austin, TX 78746
Phone: (512) 614-1640
OCVT San Antonio
255 E Sonterra Blvd, Suite 100
San Antonio, TX 78258
Phone: (210) 490-9900