Eye Tracking

Eye tracking problems are also called eye movement problems. It is when one or both eyes do not move quickly, seamlessly or accurately from one thing to another. Also the inability of a child to latch onto one single target, such as a word.

The technical term for this is “oculomotor dysfunction” and can present early in a child’s development although often this doesn’t become a serious problem until a child learns to read and write.

There are three things that contribute to tracking problems.

The first is blurry vision or problem focusing. The internal muscles of your eye control your ability to focus, if you have a focusing problem it may be hard to keep your place on a page or copy notes from a board.

You may have eye-teaming problems. This is when the muscles around each eye, that control eye movements, are not working together. This can cause double vision, make words look like they are jumping around and may cause the reader to skip lines or words altogether.

Functional peripheral vision refers to a readers ability to see both ends of the line or both ends of the word as he/she reads. If the ends blur out it can make it very difficult to move from word to word, line to line or group to group.

A patient may have one or all of these causes. Call Dr. Kinney at 206-624-0737 for a consultation if your child complains of double vision, suffers motion sickness, gets headaches or nausea, or can only read for a short period of time. Children also may bump into walls or furniture, rub their eyes while reading or lose their place. You may also see them overcompensating by holding books or games close to their face, using his or her finger as a guide on the page, or cover one eye or the other.

Tracking problems can be helped by vision therapy. Through special eye exercises, prisms, and therapeutic lenses visual-motor skills can be developed. Vision therapy helps correct some or all of the cases of many visual deficiencies.

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