Babies learn to see over a period of time, much like they learn to walk and talk. They are not born with all the visual abilities they need in life. The ability to focus their eyes, move them accu ...View Article
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Behavioral optometry is a whole person, holistic approach to vision care.
Rather than treat just the eyes, or even just the visual system, behavioral optometry assesses our behavior patterns in conjunction with our lifestyleand visual function requirements.
People’s behavior is generally consistent, and this translates to how we use our eyes, both to see and to guide our actions. Our personality traits get expressed in all facets of life. For example, how a person “drives their car,” both literally and figuratively, would likely surface in how they “drive” their visual system. A behaviorally-oriented visual evaluation uncovers such relationships, and accounts for them in prescribing and in supportive recommendations.
People who have “20/20” eyesight are able to see clearly at 20 feet of distance, while sitting still, viewing a stationary target, with no time limit, undivided attention, and without cognitive demands. How often do we find ourselves in such a simple situation?
At school and at work, most of our time requires attention, ability to focus, to coordinate our eyes, and to keep track of where we are looking. And most of this occurs at near-point, not at 20 feet.
Once we gather visual information, every individual makes use of what we see in different ways. For example, where one person sees two fingers, another sees a peace sign, a third? Bunny ears! Experience, context, mood and perspective all color our perceptions and our outlook.
If our use of our visual system is interfering with our ability to learn, to read, to function efficiently and effectively, it may be time to learn to see the world another way.
Glasses may change how a person perceives their world. They may be prescribed not only to help a person to see clearly, but also to reduce the amount of effort required to see. Lenses and/or prisms may relieve visual stress, freeing up the brain for higher-order cognitive functions.
In cases where more active support and guidance is needed, optometric vision therapy is recommended.