Vision therapy includes eye exercises and perceptual training. It is sometimes also called optometric vision training and may include the use of different color lenses. The American Academy of Pediatrics indicates that this treatment is based on the assertion that faulty eye movement and sensitivities cause behavioral problems. This treatment has not been proven to be effective.
Vision therapy is normally used to treat lazy eyes, crossed vision, double vision and convergence insufficiency and has been shown to be helpful for these conditions. It consists of exercises performed by a doctor, in the doctor’s office. Sometimes a patient will be given specific exercises to do on their own to complement the therapy. In some cases, vision therapy has also been helpful in improving learning disabilities.
Symptoms of vision problems can sometimes mimic some of the symptoms of ADHD. Children with undiagnosed vision problems may have problems reading for extended periods, focusing and concentrating on school work, daydreaming and poor academic skills. Routine eye exams are important and will help to correct any vision problems immediately. It is normally recommended that eye exams be completed every two years. If you have vision problems, your doctor may recommend that you have annual exams.
“ADHD- Unproven Treatments.” American Academy of Pediatrics.
“Complementary and Alternative Treatments.” National Resource Center on ADHD. Mar 2006.
Bernard-Bonnin, Dr. Anne-Claude. “The use of alternative therapies in treating children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder.” Canadian Pediatrics Committee. 2003.
Eileen Bailey is a freelance health writer. She is the author of What Went Right: Reframe Your Thinking for a Happier Now, Idiot’s Guide to Adult ADHD, Idiot’s Guide to Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Essential Guide to Overcoming Obsessive Love, and Essential Guide to Asperger’s Syndrome. She can be found on Twitter @eileenmbailey and on Facebook at eileenmbailey.