Studies show that a majority of concussion patients experience persistent visual symptoms (lasting longer than 3-4 weeks). Concussion evaluations done by a primary care provider involve some basic tests of vision, however these tests often miss subtle vision issues, which, left untreated, tend to prolong the recovery process. This can be especially disruptive and frustrating to students and adults trying to get back to normal life.
Light sensitivity (photophobia)
Double vision (diplopia)
Dizziness, nausea, motion sensitivity
Intolerance of busy visual environments
Inability to concentrate, especially on near vision tasks
These functional vision problems can be extremely disruptive setbacks to daily function. Simple tasks like driving, grocery shopping, reading and even social gatherings become overwhelming. Fortunately, concussion related visual problems can be treated with vision therapy.
A developmental optometrist will assess all aspects of visual function including:
Visual perception and processing
Spatial awareness/depth perception
Following the evaluation, the doctor will recommend a treatment plan. This may include an individualized vision therapy program and/or glasses.
Research shows vision therapy is a very effective treatment for common post-concussive vision issues. A comprehensive visual evaluation performed by a developmental optometrist is recommended for all post-concussion patients as part of their rehabilitation program.