Is your child having a hard time with reading comprehension? How about recognizing numbers, letter, and shapes? It could be a learning disability, but have you ever considered getting their eyes checked? Some signs and symptoms of a type of vision problem may be mistaken for a learning disability.
Symptoms of Learning-Related Vision Problems
There are many signs to watch out for when you think your child has learning-related vision problems, most commonly, eye strain and headaches. Some symptoms that can be associated with learning are a child’s dislike for reading, short attention span, poor reading comprehension, and difficulty in identifying and remembering shapes, numbers, and letters.
If neglected, the symptoms could take a turn for the worse. Symptoms like developmental immaturity and repeating, omitting, and confusing similar words as well as a persistency to reverse words might take a toll on your child.
Below, AIES.com.au shares some vision problems that can be mistaken for learning disabilities:
Eye Health and Refractive Problems
These can greatly affect a child’s visual acuity. Problems with eye health can lead to permanently decreased visual acuity, which cannot be corrected by contact lenses or eyeglasses, and low vision. Refractive problems include farsightedness, nearsightedness, and astigmatism.
There are also subtle optical problems such as higher-order aberrations, which are distortions acquired from a wavefront of light when it passes through an eye with irregularities. Critical types of higher-order aberrations are acquired when the cornea is scarred from trauma, disease, or surgery.
Functional Vision Problems
These deal with specific functions performed by parts of the eyes and the neurological control it holds over these functions. Reading abilities are affected by convergence insufficiency, which is a type of functional vision problem.
Perceptual Vision Problems
Being able to recognise and analyse words that a child has read is what visual perception entails. Children that suffer visual perception problems have trouble reading, writing, and remembering images that they have seen previously while reading.
The next time your child starts squinting or complains that they are having a hard time reading or telling which shape is which, do not assume that it is a learning disability right away because they might just be having eye problems. Do not hesitate to go to an eye doctor to make sure.