Some children manifest behavioral problems from undiagnosed vision problems. Certain visual deficiencies in eye focusing, visual convergence, and processing abilities can prevent children from efficiently performing tasks in the classroom and at home. These insufficiencies can lead to frustration, which results in acting out impulsively, angrily, and defiantly. The students often avoid schoolwork, are uncooperative, and misbehave. Vision therapy and a correct diagnosis help determine if behavioral issues are related to visual deficits. At the Optometry Center for Vision Therapy (OCVT), we’ve had success with behavioral vision therapy, showing positive improvements in children with visual impairment and behavioral problems.

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Are Vision Problems and Behavior Problems Related?

Most parents don’t realize that visual problems could contribute to their children’s behavioral problems. When children’s vision issues go undetected, their frustration and boredom grow. They may not see the board in their classroom or struggle with reading, leading them to stop doing schoolwork and act out in the classroom. As many as 60% of children diagnosed with learning disorders also suffer from unidentified vision problems. Here are symptoms to watch out for when determining if the visual impairment is contributing to behavioral problems:

  • Fatigue
  • Squinting
  • Poor concentration and comprehension
  • Hyperactivity (constantly moving and fidgeting)
  • Talking and interrupting teachers during class time
  • Resistance to homework
  • Difficulty playing or working quietly
  • Frustration or anger that leads to giving up
  • Lack of motivation

If a teacher or parent spots several of these issues in a student, consider a behavioral vision therapy assessment from OCVT.

What Vision Problems Affect Learning?

Most children with visual deficiencies don’t know they have a problem. They’re just irritated in the classroom, suffering in their learning, and often unable to articulate it. Their friends process visual information differently than they do and it’s confusing. They may even experience symptoms like headaches, eye strain, itchy and watery eyes, double vision, motion sickness, and memory problems. When the Optometry Center for Vision Therapy works with children with behavioral problems, common vision issues we treat include:

  • Visual focus deficiencies
  • Convergence insufficiency
  • Eye tracking deficits
  • Amblyopia (lazy eye)
  • Strabismus (eye turn)
  • Visual processing dysfunction (such as letter reversal errors, poor visual memory, poor hand eye coordination for writing)

When these conditions go undiagnosed, children experience discomfort and are more likely to misbehave. Treating the visual problems with behavioral vision therapy can fix these issues before they become a pattern. Find out more about vision and learning here.

Schedule a Consultation with OCVT

If your child is experiencing behavioral problems related to visual impairment, schedule a complimentary consultation with the Optometry Center for Vision Therapy. Our developmental optometrists and vision therapists have experience in evaluating whether visual problems are a contributing factor to behavior issues. Starting vision therapy early is the best way to handle both visual issues and behavioral concerns. At OCVT, we have a patient-first philosophy, and we’re focused on a developing a treatment plan individualized to each child. We use the latest treatment methods, including a course of therapy that works for your child. Fill out