Special Needs || Vision Dysfunctions can impact children and adults with Special Needs

Vision and Special Needs

Vision Dysfunctions can impact children and adults with Special Needs.

Special NeedsPersons with Diagnoses including Down Syndrome, Seizure Disorder, Static Encephalopathy, Pervasive Developmental Delay, Cerebral Palsy, Developmental Delay, and Intellectual Challenges can experience life-impacting visual symptoms. These symptoms may include difficulty making eye contact, rubbing eyes, holding near vision material either very close or very far away from the eyes, squinting eyes, headaches from visually-directed activities, frustration following a moving target, challenges catching a ball, and overall visual avoidance.

People with Special Needs can have minimal to significant challenges in one or more of the core Binocular (two eyes) Visual Areas:

  • Visual Motor Guidance – visually-directed gross (big muscle, such as throwing a ball) and fine motor (small muscle, such as writing) skills
  • Ocular Motility (eye tracking) – the ability to follow with the eyes (with only minimal head or body movement) a moving object in visual space, or the ability to follow letters in a word or words on a line of print
  • Accommodation (eye focusing) – the ability to see near-centered objects, including words on paper or in a book, with normal acuity (clarity). Eye focusing difficulties will cause near-centered targets to appear blurry
  • Vergence (eye coordination and eye alignment) – the ability to have both eyes aligned (aimed) at the same point in visual space. Eye coordination and eye alignment difficulties will cause Diplopia (double vision) or Suppression (turning off) of the vision in one eye to prevent double vision.
  • Visual Information Processing and Visual Perception – the ability to understand, get meaning, recall and remember visual data

A Functional Vision Evaluation, including eye refraction (determination of possible spectacle correction) and eye health needs, provides insight into the visual status and Diagnoses to guide treatment options.

Yoked prisms

Treatment options may include corrective lenses and prisms, Yoked Prism (to alter the perception of visual space, changing visual responses and overall behavior) and Optometric Vision Therapy/Orthoptics for such Diagnoses as lack of normal Visual Sensory and Motor Processing, Ocular Motility (eye tracking) dysfunctions, Accommodation (eye focusing) Spasm, Convergence Insufficiency, Strabismus (eye turn), and Amblyopia (reduced visual acuity/clarity).

Dr. Kadet enjoys working with the Special Needs population. He has specialized Diagnostic Techniques for obtaining necessary data with minimum patient attention and/or without verbalization.

For further study and additional information, please visit Children with Special Needs

Contact Hope Clinic to begin the process of learning how Vision Therapy can help you or your child! Hope Clinic offers two online options: Schedule a Free Screening or Schedule a Full Functional Vision Evaluation, or call us at (425) 462-7800.