Articles‎ > ‎

Vision Problems Masked as Learning Disabilities

posted Mar 17, 2015, 4:31 PM by Almohajer Aljadeed   [ updated Mar 17, 2015, 4:32 PM ]
By Dr. M. Moussa

It is important for parents and educators to develop a better understanding of the challenges a child may experience at school or home with reading, comprehension, double vision, headaches or eye strain. If the information that is sent to the brain is compromised in some way, it can make learning very difficult. A study published in the Journal of Attention Disorders’ November 2013 issue states that “attention and internalizing problems improved significantly following treatment for convergence insufficiency.” Convergence insufficiency is an eye coordination disorder which can make reading difficult and cause symptoms such as eye strain, double vision, loss of concentration, and frequent loss of place when reading and working up close. All these can play a negative role in learning. If your child isn’t performing up to his or her potential in school or sports, poor vision may be to blame - even if she or he has perfect eye sight. Several visual problems that prevent children from doing well in the classroom can go undetected in traditional eye tests. Some of the common signs of vision problems include headaches associated with using eyes, burning and itching of eyes, nausea after reading, double vision, holding books very close to their eyes, use of finger to keep place, taking a long time in completing homework, and skipping or re-reading of lines. “Good eye sight means you can see the books’ content, but poor vision means you can’t organize the information available to you, and you can’t picture the stories and their events” explains Dr. Moussa.  Successful patients of vision therapy demonstrate enhanced functioning on tasks and develop the visual skills needed to achieve more effectively at school, work, and play. “You should consult your primary-care eye doctor.” advises Dr. Moussa, “preferably someone who has a lot of experience dealing with children.”