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Vision Related Learning Disorders

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Learning and Eyesight Go Hand In Hand

Recognizing Vision Related Learning Disorders in Children

Learning disorders are complex and not always as simple to recognize as parents or educators might expect. There are many ways that a child might struggle to engage with new information. The result of this struggle, regardless of its origin, is a delay in critical educational stages. Vision disorders can significantly affect the course of a child’s education, so identifying these problems early is very important.

Seeing Clearly for the First Time

A comprehensive eye exam can rule out refractive vision errors. Refractive errors result in many of the most common vision disorders, including myopia (nearsightedness), hyperopia (farsightedness), and astigmatism (multiple focal points relative to the retina).

Refractive errors can be easily managed with corrective lenses. Even very young children can comfortably and successfully wear eyeglasses. Older children and young adults can explore the option of contact lenses if prescriptions permit.

Other Vision Disorders

Vision disorders can be thought of as problems with the way that visual information is collected by the eye and processed in the brain. They are not learning disorders or learning disabilities although vision disorders certainly have the effect of making reading and study very difficult. Non-refractive vision disorders can be classified as perceptual vision problems or functional vision problems.

Important Information About Vision Related Disorders:

Perceptual Vision Problems

Identifying visual information, understanding it, and applying it to memorized data are all related to perception. Any difficulty in this process might result in a perceptual vision problem. For instance, a child might have difficulty recognizing that a word on a page matches a concept they are already familiar with. As a result, a child cannot make sense of information as quickly as their peers.

Recognizing and Diagnosis Childhood Vision Problems

This is a list of signs and/or symptoms at may indicate your child may have difficulties with visual processing:

  • Rubbing the eyes
  • Frequent, excessive blinking
  • Squinting or closing one eye
  • Turning or tilting the head while looking at a page
  • Placing the face very close to book surfaces
  • Double vision
  • Blurred vision
  • Eye strain
  • Headaches
  • Eyes that appear to move independently of one another
  • Crossed eyes
  • Slow reading speed, using a finger as a guide, losing place while reading
  • Swapping or reversing letters in a consistent pattern
  • Confusing similar words or omitting words
  • Difficulty reproducing shapes
  • Poor eye-hand coordination

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