Vision, Visual Processing and Learning

Today, without knowing the cause, thousands of adults and children continue to struggle with learning at school and in the workplace. I.T advancements and technology accessibility put sufferers under more pressure to improve. But the thing is, learning isn’t a black and white concept. It’s the result of a complex web of processes, one of which is vision. Vision and learning are closely connected, and understanding the relationship goes beyond evaluating eye health and sight clarity.

Children and adults at high risk of learning-related vision problems must receive intensive optometric evaluation, as part of a broader evaluation and management plan. Optometrists have an obligation to thoroughly assess their patients’ eye health and visual functions, providing informed results and recommended treatment plans accordingly - from lenses to prisms to vision therapy. The latter exists to improve visual processing and, in turn, improve responsiveness to education.

Vision is Complex

Consider vision an umbrella housing three connected functionalities:

  1. Eye health
  2. Visual efficiency (like eye movements)
  3. Visual information processing (like spatial awareness and integration with other senses)

To identify and treat learning-related vision problems, a comprehensive evaluation is critical!

Emerging research suggests that many people with reading difficulties suffer from visual and language processing deficits too, along with eye strain, double vision, and more. This boils down to the intricate visual system, made up of the eyes, brain, and visual pathways. Because unresolved visual issues can negatively impact knowledge retention, management is essential, which could come in various forms:

  • Optical correction
  • Vision therapy
  • A combination of both

It’s clear to see that everything is connected, and there is a thin thread linking vision, reading, and learning, Therefore, treatment programs for learning-related vision problems must cater to the patient’s unique challenges and goals.

Vision problems have been proven to interfere with learning, but through deep evaluation by a professional optometrist, we can certainly prevent problems before they become bigger problems - preparing students for a lifetime of successful learning!