Our office is wheelchair-friendly. If specific accommodations would be helpful (such as being scheduled during the least crowded or quietest time of day), or if there is anything we need to know to make your child’s experience with us a more positive one, please call our office to speak with our team.
In children with ASD, common visual findings include:
- Atypical eye movements
- Increased prevalence of strabismus (crossed eye)
- Problems coordinating central and peripheral vision (i.e. scanning or not looking directly at an object)
- Poor or decreased visual attention
- Being easily overwhelmed by crowding effect (i.e. word searches or visually overstimulating environments)
Evaluation and personalized treatment can help a child with ASD to organize visual space, gain peripheral stability, attend to and appreciate central vision, gain more efficient eye coordination and eye movements, and improve visual information processing. Achieving these goals can help your child feel less overwhelmed by visual stimuli and interact with their world more comfortably, confidently, and efficiently.
Children with undetected and untreated vision problems can show some of the same behaviors that are commonly attributed to ADHD including hyperactivity, distractibility, and impulsivity. Due to the similarities in signs and symptoms, some children with vision problems are mislabeled as having ADHD. A study in 2000 by researchers at Children’s Eye Institute in San Diego uncovered a relationship between a common vision disorder, convergence insufficiency, and ADHD. They found that children with convergence insufficiency are three times more likely to be diagnosed with ADHD than children without the vision disorder.
An eye and vision examination with an eye doctor that evaluates the functional and developmental aspects of vision must be a part of a comprehensive evaluation for any child with ADHD to rule out any underlying visual problems that may contribute to or cause the child’s difficulty with concentration, attention, and academic performance. Children need more than 20/20 vision to thrive in school.
Regular eye exams are very important in children with Down Syndrome because eye and vision disorders are very common. Diagnosis and treatment of these problems can improve vision, eye alignment, and the development of visual pathways and can help enhance learning and overall functioning.
Children with Down Syndrome have a higher prevalence of:
- Blurry vision from high refractive errors (need for glasses)
- Strabismus (crossed eye)
- Nystagmus (dancing or shaking of the eyes)
- Difficulties with accommodation (focusing up close)
- Cataracts (born with cataracts or developing cataracts)
- Blepharitis (inflammation of the eyelids)
- Tearing (blocked or narrow tear drainage system)
- Keratoconus (cone shaped distortion of the front of the eye)
- Glaucoma (elevated pressure within the eye)