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Convergence insufficiency

Convergence insufficiency is an eye condition affecting eye coordination when looking at nearby objects. This condition may cause double or blurry vision when looking at things up close, like a smartphone screen or book.

It often begins during childhood but can affect adults following a brain injury, such as a concussion. Early treatment for convergence insufficiency can help your eyes work together to see nearby objects.

Symptoms of convergence insufficiency

Convergence insufficiency usually causes problems during close-up activities such as using a computer or reading. The most common symptoms include:

People with convergence insufficiency may also experience difficulty reading. You may read slowly, lose your place, feel like the words float, or move around the page. If a child experiences convergence insufficiency, you may notice the child has problems reading or doing several close-up activities. Your child may:

If you notice your child has any of these symptoms, ensure to talk to an eye doctor. Teachers and parents may mistake these difficulties a child experiences as an inability to learn or read, but the problem is a vision impairment that requires treatments.

Causes of convergence insufficiency

Convergence insufficiency occurs when the nerves controlling your eye muscles do not work properly. Usually, when focusing on something up-close, your eyes turn in, but one eye turns out for people with convergence insufficiency.

Doctors aren’t certain why convergence insufficiency occurs in most cases, but research shows that it usually happens after a concussion or brain injury.

How will the eye doctor diagnose convergence insufficiency?

The eye doctor may first ask questions about your symptoms. They may also ask if you have double or blurry vision, trouble focusing, tired eyes, trouble focusing during close-up activities or headaches.

The doctor may also do some tests to check the following:

Your vision can be perfect, and you still have convergence insufficiency, so a regular eye exam is necessary.

Treatment for convergence insufficiency

Convergence insufficiency treatments involve a vision therapy known as convergence exercises. This usually includes working with a specialist to practice focusing on objects at varying distances. You can also carry out exercises at home and use a special type of glasses called prism glasses. In a few cases, surgery can help strengthen the eye muscles.

You may notice an improvement immediately after you start treatment, but in some cases, improvement in vision takes about 12 weeks or longer. Your symptoms may reoccur after you become sick, do not get enough sleep or engage in many close-up activities.

If you experience symptoms of convergence insufficiency, visit Optimal Vision for an eye exam with our eye doctor. Call us today on 020 7183 3725 to schedule an eye exam with our experienced and friendly eye doctor.

Dr Amir Mani - Specialist refractive surgeon

One of the most experienced refractive surgeons in London

Dr Mani has performed more than 20,000 ophthalmic procedures, including LASIK, LASEK, PRK, Femto Cataract, RLE, Lens ICL and Phakic IOL Surgery

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