Do I need a Behavioural Optometrist?

Behavioural Optometrists have an understanding of vision and how to encourage its development. This style of Optometry tends to be more holistic in its approach as it tries to incorporate the physical, neurological and developmental aspects of vision.

Behavioural Optometrists spend years in post-graduate and continuing education to master the complex visual programs that are prescribed to prevent or eliminate visual problems and enhance visual performance.

Not all optometrists practice Behavioural Optometry, which includes neurodevelopmental and functional optometry.

Behavioural Optometrists find that most children with learning-related vision problems have good distance eyesight but have great difficulty maintaining vision up close such as when reading and writing. Most school screenings only test the sharpness of distance eyesight. As a result many vision problems that can impact on learning go undetected.

Parents and teachers who understand and can identify the signs and symptoms can detect learning-related visual problems in a child. Behavioural optometric intervention in the management of children and adults with learning disabilities helps to eliminate any vision problem that may obstruct learning.

Current research indicates that some people with reading difficulties have co-existing visual and language processing deficits. For this reason, a vision examination that assesses those factors influencing learning is vital.

Key points

·        Vision problems can and often do interfere with learning

·        People at risk of learning-related vision problems should be evaluated by an optometrist who provides diagnostic and management services in this area

·        Problems in identifying and treating people with learning-related vision problems arise if the definition of vision is limited to clarity of sight and healthy eyes

·        The goal of optometric intervention is to improve visual function and alleviate associated signs and symptoms

·        Prompt treatment of learning-related vision problems enhances the ability of children and adults to perform to their full potential

·        People with learning problems require help from many disciplines to meet the learning challenges they face. Behavioural Optometric involvement constitutes one aspect of the multi-disciplinary management approach required to prepare the individual for lifelong learning

Is Behavioural Optometry Covered by Health Insurance or the Government Spectacle Subsidy?

Health insurance policies which include Optometry cover, will usually contribute towards consultations and any spectacles required. In the case of the Enable Spectacle subsidy; $281.25 can be claimed annually for consultation and spectacle costs for those who meet the eligibility criteria.

Talk to us today to see if an appointment with Kristine who has a special interest in this area would benefit you or your family.