Convergence insufficiency - tell me about your experience
June 25, 2021 8:56 AM   Subscribe

So I am wondering if anyone has gone through vision therapy for convergence insufficiency and other related eye problems and if has it improved their reading. If you or your child did it, how many in-therapy sessions or how many months? Were you pretty happy with the results? How often did you do the home work? 30 minutes daily or longer? Or less? Anything we should look for, anecdotally, to make the experience a positive and productive one?

My child was diagnosed with possible CI (convergence insufficiency ) by her pediatrician, and we got an eye test done and she has CI, some double vision, and pretty extreme weakness in following a line of text left to right.

She can read at a mid-2nd grade level (at the end of 2nd grade) but you can tell she really struggles at it, and can't read a long book. She's not dyslexic, and she doesn't mention headaches from double vision either. She has 20/20 vision.

My insurance doesn't cover it, but it's not particularly expensive either, as medical treatments go, so no issues there.
posted by The_Vegetables to Health & Fitness (6 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
 
Best answer: I did this as a younger adult and found it extremely helpful with my ability to read for longer periods without getting tired and my double vision (when tired) also vastly improved. I did two courses of the Gemstone computer-based therapy (which was actually fun as it's like a game) over a period of about 10 years. I am once again feeling the effects of CI, but was advised that at my age (early 50s) the therapy would likely not work as well.
posted by Lescha at 9:32 AM on June 25, 2021


Best answer: My niece is in a neuro-visual training program for similar issues (eyes not working together, focus problems). It's helped a great deal - she's now able to track with both eyes together.

She has a one-hour lesson with her visual trainer, and we do 20-40 minutes of practice (homework) every day, depending on the week. The homework is essential - and like any other homework/practice, kids don't always want to do it, but it doesn't work without that daily repetition. Your child may be different (my niece has other developmental disabilities), but I also find that we need to be the primary organizers of the practice.

She's been in the training for over a year now - and is still making incremental improvements. The changes are gradual, but noticeable.
posted by jb at 9:53 AM on June 25, 2021


(I said niece, but I'm her primary caregiver. She's a young adult).
posted by jb at 9:53 AM on June 25, 2021


Best answer: I'm in my early 30s and got an eye test recently. The finding was that my vision is not quite 20/20. I have astigmatism and could get glasses with a very small prescription. But it turns out the reason why I get eye strain occasionally is because of convergence insufficiency!

I was giving some print outs with exercises to do and told to try them for a month and then see how my eyes feel. I haven't started doing them yet, but I estimate that it would take less than 30 mins each day.

So you could consider trying exercises at home for a month and then checking whether there's progress before committing to seeing the therapist.
posted by kinddieserzeit at 12:26 PM on June 25, 2021


I had strabismus when I was a kid (I hadn’t heard of convergence insufficiency, but Google tells me strabismus is a type). I was 8 when it was diagnosed and I did vision therapy for about 30 minutes a day for a few years. It fixed my vision so that I never needed surgery, and the fix has stuck for 40 years with no further therapy.
posted by Kriesa at 7:57 PM on June 25, 2021


I'm being treated for convergence insufficiency right now! I've been seeing a neuro-opthalmologist once a month since January. I had my 6th session last week and the doctor thinks I'll benefit from 1 or 2 more. Sessions are about 45min-1 hour and then I go home and do the exercises for 20-30 minutes a day. There are some exercises with prisms and red/green glasses that I wouldn't be able to do without borrowing the equipment and red/green image cards, but I did see some improvement from the simpler exercises (brock string with beads, near/far letter charts).

The CI was a result of a concussion in January 2019. Prior to starting vision therapy, I was completely unable to read books for all of 2019-2020; I'd get a splitting eyestrain headache after only a few minutes. I started reading again after 4 months of vision therapy and I can read for about half an hour now with only a minor headache, as long as I remember to look up every few minutes, and depending on how much eyestrain I have from work.
posted by kiripin at 2:27 PM on June 27, 2021 [1 favorite]


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