Diagnosis and Treatment at Harrel Eyecare In Tulsa
If close work such as sewing, reading or writing places severe strain on your eyes, causing blurriness or double vision, then you might simply need corrective lenses for a case of presbyopia -- or you might be suffering from a case of convergence insufficiency (CI). This is a problem concerning the eye muscles that allow the left and right eyes to work together to create a single, clear three-dimensional image. Fortunately, our team of optometrists at Harrel Eyecare in Tulsa can diagnose the problem and prescribe vision therapy to help you enjoy a clearer view of the world from all distances.
Understanding Convergence Insufficiency
We think of properly aligned eyes as always pointing in the exact same direction to produce binocular vision, giving images both clarity and sense of depth. But when you must focus on an image only a few inches from your nose, your eyes cannot maintain that perfect alignment without giving you two blurry and/or overlapping images. To obtain clear near vision, the eyes must point inward (toward each other) slightly. But this requires a certain amount of muscular strength, and some people's eye muscles lack the necessary strength or stamina to maintain it. Other people have a condition called exophoria that naturally pulls the eye toward an out-ward facing orientation. In either case, the result is convergence insufficiency.
Knowing the Symptoms
The most common symptoms of convergence insufficiency are blurry or double vision, headaches and eye strain after a certain period of near-focus activity. Words on a page may appear to drift around, promoting vertigo. You find yourself rubbing your eyes, struggling to maintain concentration or closing one eye to obtain clearer vision. In some people the brain simply starts ignoring the input from one eye. This reaction, known as suppression, eliminates the double vision but also does away with depth perception.
Getting Help for Convergence Insufficiency in Tulsa
As specialists in vision therapy in Tulsa, we can diagnose a case of convergence insufficiency. Vision testing helps us to eliminate other possible causes of blurry or double vision such as presbyopia, a natural loss of near focus in the lens of the middle-aged eye. If you're seeing well according to the eye chart but not according to your own personal experience at close range, then we need to test the amount of distance the eyes can focus on easily and the amount of prism necessary to produce double vision.
Vision therapy options for convergence insufficiency include:
- Exercises - Near-focus exercises can often strengthen the muscles that control the eyes' ability to point inward. Some of these exercises can even be run from a home computer.
- Prism glasses - Specialized eyewear such as prism reading glasses can help the eye muscles out by doing some of the convergence for them.