As the name indicates, it is the inability for the eyes to converge appropriately. What that means is when the eyes engage to fixate at a near point target they don’t come all the way in. This can produce what we know to be called double vision. Blurry vision can also be experienced when you have a convergence insufficiency.
Convergence insufficiency cases are probably the most prevalent issue in vision related disorders. They happen to be the most commonly missed ones as well. If a person has otherwise clear vision, this problem may remain undiagnosed. Similarly, most eye exams and school screenings do not look for this and given the implications on academic performance, learning, and development, it’s not something we should ignore or leave unaddressed. As we’ve seen with other medical issues, the pattern shows us that left untreated most conditions worsen instead of righting themselves. A convergence insufficiency disorder can affect us in many areas of life and follow us from childhood to adulthood.
For those of us wondering whether or not we have a convergence insufficiency, don’t fret, we have a list of symptoms for convergence insufficiency’s that might shed some light into what it is we’re looking to address and ultimately treat. The symptoms can range in severity for each item but are not limited to:
Now, the cause for these symptoms are associated with convergence insufficiency but what about the cause of convergence insufficiency in general? Science isn’t able to tell us the origin of convergence insufficiencies yet, but what we can reason is that to some extent it is influenced by genetic factors as well as environmental factors. For now there's no clear cut origin. Aside from the physical symptoms, we can talk about the effect it could have on our daily lives. The ability to converge effectively is paramount when it comes to our quality of life. If we are unable to converge, it can affect everything from learning to personality development. With double or blurred vision, learning for children comes next to impossible depending on severity. For adults, doing near point work will prove difficult. Also, pushing through these difficulties with the exertion of energy will end up being the origin of maladaptive behaviors that are used to evade the discomfort of the issue.
For this particular disorder there happens to be scientific backed research for the therapeutic value of vision therapy. The Convergence Insufficiency Treatment Trial (CITT) published the results from two trials that indicate that vision therapy programs are effective in treating children and adults who have CI. They also released the Convergence Insufficiency Symptoms Survey (CISS) to help in diagnostic measures. What the study concluded was that a regiment of vision therapy and orthoptics resulted in the successful treatment of children and adults who suffered from CI. Amplify EyeCare Chattanooga utilizes this exact approach when it comes to treating out-patients who have a convergence insufficiency. Our vision therapy program at Amplify EyeCare Chattanooga uses a well rounded approach to achieve the best results for each person with a tailor made therapy program. With an advanced vision exam and therapy patients can look forward to tackling this issue.
Convergence insufficiency is one of the most common vision conditions impacting a child's performance in the classroom.