Updated: Nov 30, 2020
I mainly wanted to introduce our readers to the fact that sometimes when a bright person struggles with reading (actually often...), there could be a whole lot more to the story than being 'dyslexic'. There could actually be an entirely different problem occurring unrelated to dyslexia.
I don't like lumping all these bright but reading impaired kids into the same group. It's really not fair to them.
So, I immediately noticed something strange about the first photo in the CBS article - the photo that showed the child using their finger on the text as a way to possibly compensate for poor eye movements to help guide the eyes when reading.
I started to wonder, if that is an illustration of what dyslexic people do to help them muddle along during reading, how many people with 'dyslexia' could be helped simply by vision therapy which could help them get their eyes to the correct spot on the page?
But then I read on.
And I lost hope for all those kids as soon as soon as I read the following quote in the article: "In the 19th century, doctors blamed bad eyesight, calling dyslexia "word blindness." But today, medical scans clearly show it's in the brain."
I believe that to be a straw man argument that people have been using against Optometry Science and Vision Therapy for decades.
These doctors (many who never actually went to optometry school to study vision) say something like: "reading problems have nothing to do with eyesight problems."
But they almost always leave out all the other vision problems that are unrelated to eyesight problems. There's more to vision than seeing 20/20.
Now, just about every eye doctor and optometrist will agree that dyslexia has nothing to do with bad eyesight AND that dyslexia is "in the brain."
However, optometrists have known for decades now, that "visual skill" is in the brain. Heck almost all of what you would think of as "vision" or "sight" is IN THE BRAIN.
I've even read that over half of what the brain is processing deals with visual information.
The eyes are mainly receptors. Optometry school 101.
So when we hear a medical doctor from Yale, or another school, say that reading problems or 'dyslexia' have nothing to do with 'eyesight' or 'vision problems' or 'eye problems', yes, they are stating a fact.
But what about other types of vision problems like convergence disorders? Or eye tracking problems? Or eye focusing (accommodative) disorders which have been scientifically proven to impede reading?
Why do they always leave those out?
Well, for one, they didn't go to optometry school.
I wonder if these Doctors have ever read through a straw (try reading through a straw and you will understand what it's like to have an eye tracking disorder).
But I also wonder if these doctors ever saw words on a page or go blurry or double, like many of my reading challenged patients do?
I wonder what these doctors ever tried read a book without moving their eyes, or by shifting their eyes from right to left instead of left to right?
Maybe we Optometrists, simply need to educate more.