What is vision therapy?

Vision therapy is the name given to the activities used by a behavioural optometrist to enhance and improve vision processes. It is different to “orthoptics” which uses an exercise programme to strengthen the eye muscles and literally straighten the eyes. Our vision involves over two thirds of our brain and links closely with all the sensory system. In some individuals these links haven’t developed well or are inefficient and by developing and strengthening these links we can make an individual more visually efficient.

A VT programme will involve working on how the eyes team together, how they focus on objects and how they move in space, but in addition we work on the links between these systems and balance and the way we interpret visual information.

Following a VT programme an individual should be more efficient and faster at processing visual information and should do this with far greater ease, free of symptoms of eye strain or discomfort and better able to think. Often they will find they are better at problem solving, maths and spellings and able to work comfortably for longer.

A VT programme is tailored to each individual and modified as they develop as no two subjects will have the same problems or needs. This requires specialised and professional input, combined with an understanding of the demands on that person both now and in the future.

Activities are structured to be enjoyable, but can be challenging and demanding and will need to be worked on everyday if real success is to be achieved.

We offer two types of vision therapy programmes –

In practice – We see the individual in the practice on a weekly basis, as well as providing additional home training exercises to be done in between. Typically an “In practice programme” lasts 4 months. Undoubtedly this is the most effective programme we offer, as we are seeing the individual more often we can keep the programme on track and modified for the individual.

We also have the largest and most equipped vision therapy centre in Ireland.

Distance Learning – Here the emphasis is on working at home. We see the individual once every 4 weeks and review what work has already been done and provide new activities for the next 4 weeks, training the individual and their parent in what needs to be done at home. This programme is most popular with parents who have to travel a long way to the practice and for whom weekly visits are not possible. Our distance programme typically needs about 15 minutes per day at home to give maximum benefit. 

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