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What Conditions Can Vision Therapy Help Treat?

Vision TherapyVision therapy is a customized, doctor-prescribed regimen of in-office and at-home eye exercises aimed at strengthening communication between the eyes and brain. Your eye doctor may also employ vision therapy aids such as prism glasses and balance boards.

By improving the visual system, vision therapy helps treat several eye conditions and minimize their associated symptoms.

Schedule a functional eye exam at Complete Vision Care in Leadington to see if vision therapy is right for you or your child.  

Below you'll find a list of conditions that can be treated with vision therapy.

Anomalous Retinal Correspondence

This condition results from an eye turn, known as strabismus, most commonly found in children under the age of 3. This eye turn causes the fovea, the central part of the retina responsible for detailed vision, to turn away from the object the child is looking at. To prevent double vision (diplopia), the brain compensates by ignoring signals from the original fovea and creates a new point in the retina that acts as the fovea. This “extra-fovea” compensates for the misalignment of the eyes but causes other vision problems.


Anisometropia occurs when one eye has a significantly higher optical prescription than the other. As each eye sends visual signals to the brain, this large difference in refractive power causes the brain to receive two very different sets of visual information. The brain struggles to turn two distinct images into one clear image, resulting in squinting, headaches, and eye strain. 

If anisometropia goes untreated, it can result in a lazy eye, also known as amblyopia. In this case, the brain begins to ignore visual information from the weaker eye, to compensate for the imbalance in visual input. Once this happens, a person is essentially only seeing with one eye. 

Third Cranial Nerve Palsy

The third cranial nerve is in charge of four external eye muscles that rotate the eye outward and downward toward the ear, turn the eye inward, and move the eye upward and downward. It also controls the constriction of the pupil, the position of the upper eyelid, and visual focusing abilities.

Third-nerve palsy refers to a condition where the third cranial nerve is damaged by injury or illness, causing partial or complete paralysis of the eye muscles.

Convergence Insufficiency

Convergence is the ability of the eyes to turn inward together to view objects close up. Convergence insufficiency refers to the eyes’ inability to look inwards and maintain comfortable focus. This can significantly impact a student’s ability to learn, and an adult’s ability to perform at work, as it significantly affects the ability to read, write and look at a computer screen.

Convergence Insufficiency can result in a halo effect around words, blurred or double vision, or objects or words seeming to move on a page.


Nystagmus causes quick, uncontrolled eye movements up and down, side to side, or in circles.

These involuntary eye movements can cause problems with night vision, depth perception, balance, and identification of moving objects or people.

Dissociated Vertical Deviation

In this condition, the eyes fail to develop binocular coordination, causing one eye to drift upward when not in use. This can occur in one or both eyes, and how much each drift may differ. Drifting outward or rotation of one eye is also possible.

Patients usually don’t notice symptoms when their eye drifts, since the visual system suppresses the vision in that eye.

Autism-Related Eye Disorders

Problems with a person’s vision, particularly in relation to spatial awareness and processing visual information, can cause people with autism to feel confused or anxious. This may result in the worsening of certain symptoms and behaviors linked to autism, such as lack of eye contact and viewing objects with their side vision rather than looking straight at them.

Many of these symptoms and behaviors may seem completely unrelated to a person’s vision. However, poor visual skills may actually be a contributing factor or even the root cause of some of these issues.

Kids and Adults With Down Syndrome

Down syndrome significantly increases a person’s risk for a variety of vision and eye problems. Many of these problems can be successfully managed, especially when detected and treated early. 

The proper assessment and correction of eye conditions can improve the quality of life of people living with Down syndrome.


Strabismus, also known as an “eye turn” or “crossed-eyes,” refers to an improper alignment of the eyes. While one eye may look straight ahead, the other eye turns outward, inward, downward or upward. This condition may be continuous, or come and go sporadically. The straight and misaligned eye may also alternate positions occasionally.

Due to this misalignment, the eyes are unable to provide the brain with consistent binocular visual information, leading to overlapping images, blurry vision or double vision, as well as depth perception issues.


Amblyopia, also known as “lazy eye,” is a vision condition usually associated with early childhood. People who suffer a traumatic brain injury (TBI) or have a neurological condition may also develop amblyopia.

The condition results from inconsistent visual information being delivered from each eye to the brain. The brain is unable to combine the two different images into a single coherent picture. In order to compensate for this inconsistency in visual information, the brain begins to ignore input from the weaker eye. This causes symptoms such as loss of binocular vision and depth perception.

Retained Primitive Reflexes

We’re all born with primitive reflexes that are fundamental for the development of things such as sensory integration, head control, and muscle tone. As we grow, and our brains develop, our primitive reflexes are slowly replaced by more voluntary and controlled movements.

Vision and movement go hand-in-hand as they gradually replace primitive reflexes, allowing us to move through our world more adeptly and confidently.

Sometimes, due to trauma, illness, injury, or stress, primitive reflexes are not properly developed and are retained. This can cause various vision problems, including problems with both fine and gross oculomotor skills.

Visual Processing Difficulties

Visual processing dysfunction is a condition affecting the brain’s ability to process information received from the eyes. 

When the brain isn’t able to make sense of visual information, it can negatively affect a person’s performance in the classroom, at work, and while playing sports. 

Visual processing dysfunction can make things like eye teaming, eye focusing, and eye movement skills all the more difficult.

Meniere’s Disease

Meniere’s disease is a condition affecting the inner ear. It can cause ear congestion, severe dizziness, tinnitus, and hearing loss.

It’s important to have a comprehensive eye exam if you’ve been diagnosed with a balance disorder like Meniere’s disease. This will allow your eye doctor to check if visual dysfunction may be contributing to symptoms or is a secondary cause of your balance problems. 

These and other conditions that affect how your eyes and brain communicate can cause a lot of difficulties if they go untreated. 

Call us today to schedule a functional eye exam at Complete Vision Care in Leadington to see if vision therapy is right for you.  

Our practice serves patients from Leadington, Webster Groves, Festus, and Farmington, Missouri and surrounding communities.

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