Vision Therapy – Liam’s Story

While waiting for Liam’s appointment with the Pediatric Neurologist, we thought we would continue with the other steps recommended by the Educational Psychologist, and so we took Liam to a Behavioral Optometrist.

I found that the help and expertise we were given was just amazing, they interacted with Liam so well and performed many different tests, and a lovely in-depth report followed a short time later, which helped me understand Liam’s eye condition a bit more.

Their recommendation was that Liam attend Vision Therapy, they felt that there was a small possibility that we could get both his eyes working together, and so we booked twelve 30 minute sessions.

I had been asking his Ophthalmologist over the years if we could do eye exercises and he had always told me that they wouldn’t work.  So now, with the possibility that we could start getting his eyes to work together, I was one very excited mama!

Along with his Occupational and Vision therapy sessions each week, Liam was given a lot of homework.  He had to do eye exercises every day and he truly didn’t complain as much as I had expected him to.  I think that, because he usually had to work twice as hard as his classmates in the classroom, he was used to the extra effort.  My heart just exploded with love watching him work every afternoon after school, but my heart was also crushed because he had to work tirelessly every afternoon.  I very much wished that he could get home and play like most kids, but we were working towards something, and we were hoping that it would pay off in the end.

Liam’s Vision Therapist had such highs and lows during sessions, just as she thought that they were going to have a breakthrough, his vision would go back again.  I was so certain that with all the effort we were putting in at home, we would eventually get that breakthrough.  We booked another 12 sessions and continued with Vision Therapy once the first 12 sessions were up.  However, after his 24th session, she told me that she didn’t think any more sessions would be beneficial.  Crushed by the news, and knowing that we all put our all into the exercises and sessions, we had to admit defeat.

More recently, his Optometrist told us about this light, or Syntonic Therapy.  She had a unit that she was happy for us to take home.  She said that she didn’t feel it would work, but she would regret it if we didn’t try.

I prepared the spare room, put blackout lining onto our curtains to make the room dark and Liam starred into the unit 5 days a week for 20 minutes at a time.  After 20 sessions at home, and after watching videos of Syntonic Therapy success stories, I did get my hopes up a bit.  However, it didn’t help in Liam’s case, but we tried 😀

I do think that if Liam hadn’t have had the eye muscle surgery, we may have had a bit more success with the Vision Therapy, but we will never know.  It is something I wish that we had researched before making the eye muscle surgery decision.  If we were more informed at the time, we probably would have opted for Vision Therapy first.

We take him for regular check-ups and we have been through many frames and prescription changes.

Along with the usual frame and prescription changes that come with growth, which are quite costly, we have had a few other frustrating expenses.

Our dog got hold of Liam’s specs one night and only left the lenses, snapped in half.  They were a pair of Tomato frames, and the rubber bits on the frames must have appealed to her, devastating at the time, funny now.  We always make sure his glasses are out of her reach now, just in case she can’t resist temptation again.

Liam also broke his frames on the jungle gym at school once, luckily his lenses weren’t damaged and we only had to get the frames, but they did have to order them in, as we wanted the exact same one so that the lenses could fit in.  It took about a week and we had the new frames.  About two months later, he had a check-up and his lens prescription changed, lol!

As far as frames go, we started Liam off with a pair of Julbo’s, they were just too adorable!  I noticed that his teachers at his crèche thought I was putting them on upside-down because he would frequently come home with them upside-down, ha ha!  The Julbo frames were perfect for his eye condition as there was no way he could look over the top of his specs, he always had to look through his lenses.  They were also flexible, so the frames could bend and wouldn’t break.  I’m sure if bent with a lot of force they would have broken, but with the strength of a toddler, that wasn’t a possibility.

Once Liam had outgrown the biggest pair of Julbo’s available to us, we went for Tomato frames.  They were awesome, the nose piece and ear pieces were adjustable, the plastic was also flexible.  The nose piece that came with the frames irritated Liam a little, but luckily they had another, more solid, nose piece which we bought separately.

Liam outgrew his Tomato frames this year, and now that he is a lot bigger and doesn’t need something as flexible, so he chose Spiderman frames.  The optometrist had a special on, buy one pair of multifocals and get another free, so he also chose dark blue frames.

Once all is said and done, we couldn’t imagine Liam without his glasses, although we do hope that one day his vision will be sorted and he won’t need them, I think it would take us some time to get used to him not wearing his specs.

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Vision Therapy (2015-2016) & Syntonic Therapy (2017)

 

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