Traumatic Brain Injuries and Vision

Published on
March 3, 2022

Despite the name, traumatic brain injuries do not usually occur in instances many of us would consider traumatic, studies show that 50% of concussions go undiagnosed or unreported. One of the most common symptoms to look out for after a fall, sports injury, car accident, or any other injury to the brain are visual symptoms. Studies show that 90 percent of traumatic brain injuries are accompanied by vision problems. Patients with a traumatic brain injury are likely to have visual deficits since visual pathways are present in every part of the brain. A patient with a mild traumatic brain injury can still experience significant or excessive visual symptoms.


What are the causes of vision problems following a traumatic brain injury?

  • Eye Damage - The eye itself can be damaged by a head injury, and eye conditions such as cataracts that were present before the injury may be aggravated. You might have trouble changing focus between near and far objects if your eye muscles are damaged and not working properly. It can be difficult to control eye movement if the muscles or the nerves controlling them are damaged, or if there is a hairline fracture in the eye socket.
  • Brain Damage - The brain itself may also be damaged by traumatic brain injuries, affecting the "wiring" of the brain. Many brain functions, including vision, may be affected.
  • Damage to the Brain-Eye Connection - If the connection between the eyes and the brain isn't working properly, vision problems will result even if the eyes and brain are both working properly on their own. Damage to this connection can also cause decreased visual memory (the ability to recall items like passwords) and decreased visual field (being unable to see to the sides or above and below).


What vision problems can occur following a traumatic brain injury?

Following are some of the vision symptoms that occur following a traumatic brain injury:

  • Blurred vision
  • Eye strain, 
  • Losing place when reading
  • Balance issues or Vertigo
  • Double vision 
  • Having trouble driving
  • Feeling Dizzy 
  • Headaches
  • Cars or people moving around in the side of your vision may cause motion sickness
  • There is difficulty going to crowded environments
  • Problems with glare or light sensitivity

What is the best way to treat vision problems caused by traumatic brain injuries?

Those experiencing vision issues following a traumatic brain injury should be seen by a neuro optometrist who are experienced in treating vision issues resulting from brain injuries. Your neuro-optometrist will devise a customized treatment plan for your condition based on an evaluation of your condition. This treatment, also called neuro optometric rehabilitation may include vision therapy exercises, prism lenses, light therapy and vision aids. A person's recovery time and treatment will differ from case to case.


Vision therapy is well worth the response, time and effort. Our Son had a hard time focusing and writing neatly. After vision therapy Seth could complete a task in half the time if previously took. His abilities to focus improved greatly and so did his handwriting.

Also, he was better at listening. As a parent, we wanted learning to be fun for our Son, and vision therapy made this possible.

Amanda T.

Vision Therapy is well worth the expense, time and effort. Our son had a hard time focusing handwriting neatly. After vision therapy Seth could complete a task in half the time it previously took his abilities to focus and improved greatly and so did his handwriting.

Also, he was better at listening. As a parent you wanted learning to be fun for our son and vision therapy made this possible.

Alexa H.

Vision Therapy has given or son the tools he needs to be able to scan and read the written word more effectively and efficiently.

He love working with John and these working sessions give him the motivation to gladly work on his homework assignments.

It amazed us to see the difference in the tracking of his eyes and along a line of it's from the beginning to the end of the treatment.

Dr. McBryar , Kristen and John  are all marvelous and we would recommend them to anyone I only wish that we would have found them sooner!

Charlotte M.

Prior to coming to the institute for vision development my son complained of daily headaches. Therapy has eliminated his headaches completely. I love knowing my son is able to learn pain-free for the rest of his life because of the work that has been done over just a few weeks in this office. He he absolutely loved coming that didn't even feel like going to a doctor or therapy. We are grateful for the relief he was able to find by coming here.

Thank you!

Olivia C.

Seems much less frustrated with life

Reads non-stop and fast

Spelling abilities have been hugely improved

Seems much more confident

Thank You!!!

Kelly O.

When we first came to the practice, my son did not have huge issues, but lots of small ones- trouble with reading, sports (hitting the baseball consistently), coordination, etc- that were not easily detectable,but when put together presented issues. The staff here were all very professional and loving towards him. While I was concerned in the reading, my son was concerned with the athletic side. Seeing improvement night off the bat gave him confidence that i have nor seen in him and made him want to not only Come to therapy, but also made him want to work hard. He has surpassed his grade level and above in reading and hit his first home run this year! Thank you!!!

Alice M.
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