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Convergence Insufficiency

IMG_8756Convergence insufficiency is a very common visual disorder that occurs when the eyes cannot converge properly – that is, they tend to aim further away than they should and can’t sustain alignment easily. It presents the greatest difficulty when looking at nearpoint objects; for individuals suffering from convergence insufficiency, this often makes reading, writing and other near tasks incredibly difficult.

Chessie photoshoot 004Although convergence insufficiency is estimated to affect approximately 25 percent of the U.S. population, the disorder is not regularly tested for during basic eye exams. This means that many cases of convergence insufficiency go undetected, causing individuals to suffer with the symptoms for years before a diagnosis is made. In children, undiagnosed convergence insufficiency often leads to incorrect diagnoses of learning and behavioral issues because of the effects the condition has on their ability to see, read and concentrate easily.

At Northampton Vision Specialists, we check every patient for convergence insufficiency and then develop an individualized treatment plan based on the severity of the patient’s condition. Treatment most often includes in-office vision therapy sessions, proven to be the most effective treatment for the disorder.

Symptoms of convergence insufficiency include:

  • Difficulty sustaining visual attention at close distances for long periods of time
  • Eyestrain, blurred vision, double vision and headaches
  • Motion sickness/dizziness/vertigo
  • Clumsiness
  • Trouble catching balls and other objects in the air
  • Avoiding eye contact
  • Words moving on a page, or loss of place when reading
  • Closing or covering one eye when reading

My son came to Dr. Ruggiero with insufficient convergence and very low tracking. He had learned to read easily, but showed no interested in reading and never picked up a book to read for fun. After four months of vision therapy, he suddenly started to want to read all the time.

Jennifer Hall-Witt

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