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How Do I Get My Kid to do Vision Therapy? 5 Specialists Share Their Insights!

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In this blog post, we asked eye care specialists to give their insights from the practice regarding motivation in the vision therapy process.

Vision therapy, especially with kids, can be a constant battle if approached incorrectly. In this highly valuable blog, 5 eye care specialists from the fields of vision therapy, optometry, and ophthalmology will answer the question for you, “How do I get my kid to do vision therapy?” Let’s read about their extensive experience and insights they have to share with us!

Konrad Abramczuk: The Importance of Commitment in Vision Therapy

How do I get my kid to do vision therapy

Konrad Abramczuk

Optometrist, Certf. Vision Therapist
Optima Medical Group, Ophthalmology Clinic
Kraków, Poland

During vision therapy, we repeatedly encounter a waning commitment to exercise. This results in reduced progression and often even complete stagnation. Which eventually leads to the discontinuation of conventional therapy. We have known for a long time that the basis of therapy is commitment. Regularity and motivation to overcome one’s limitations.

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Gamification of the Vision Therapy

From experience, I can say that visual training with the AmblyoPlay app allows the little patient to be more involved in the whole therapeutic process. Thanks to its accessible form, it does not get boring like traditional therapeutic exercises.

On the contrary, the app’s scoring elements and in-game currency create a sense of competition, it stimulates the user to try and beat their own score by overcoming their limitations. The gamification of the exercise sessions encourages systematic practice, which is the basis of therapy and works on all the individual visual function

“From a practice perspective, at follow-up appointments, we often discuss patient outcomes.

Patient Engagement in Vision Therapy and Progress Monitoring

The children are very keen to hear about their progress and take pride in the continuous improvement of individual parameters. Moments of stagnation or temporary deterioration are very common in therapy, it is a challenge both professionals and parents face, keeping the child motivated to continue working to break down the barriers and see an improvement.

That is why, when using the app, the parent stays in contact with me to monitor the course of the therapy and can react at the right time and provide the correct stimulation.

Dr Yap Tiong Peng: Making Treatment Fun and Effective

What are approaches to keep kids focused and motivated with vision therapy?

Dr Yap Tiong Peng

OD, MS, PhD, DIC, FAAO, FACBO, FCOVD, FOVDR
IGARD Vision Therapy Center, Singapore

At our practice, we use a variety of approaches to keep kids focused and motivated with vision therapy.

Depending on their respective age groups and cognitive levels, we make the therapy fun and engaging so that they can participate actively during the treatment. For instance, we “gamify” certain elements of the therapy and incorporate challenges to make it enjoyable.

To help them to reach their goals, the therapists would praise them for their efforts and provide a positive experience.

These elements are incorporated in our treatment plans, which are individualised for each patient.

Expert Care and Personalization

In helping them, we are very fortunately to have an amazing team of vision therapists, as each of them have averagely about 20 years of experience working with adults and children, including those with special needs. Treatment success with vision therapy is often a boost to their confidence and can also improve their quality-of-life.

Snježana Seitz: Sharing Experience from Working with Those with Special Needs

How to get my kid to do vision therapy

Snježana Seitz

Master of Educational Rehabilitation
University Specialist in Early Intervention in
Educational Rehabilitation & Vision Therapist
Croatia

Vision therapy and vision habilitation is crucial for all children who have insufficient visual functions or functional vision, and it needs to be initiated in a timely manner to achieve better outcomes.

Challenges in Implementation of Vision Therapy: How to Get My Kid to Do Vision Therapy

Those of us involved in early childhood vision therapy/habilitation are aware that it’s not enough to just conduct a quality vision assessment and set goals. It’s also necessary to develop a program and ensure its implementation, which is sometimes challenging due to child’s lack of motivation.

Integrating Intervention into Daily Activities and Involvement of Parents

Research shows that for the success of vision habilitation, it’s important to create a program and activities that not only address the child’s visual needs but also their cognitive interests, attention, and motivation (Sonksen et al., 1991).

“Vervloed et al. (2006) note that the (re)habilitation program for improving visual functioning should be carried out by individuals who have the most frequent contact with the child, which are usually parents/caregivers.”

This way, the intervention is integrated into the child’s everyday activities, providing them with more opportunities to practice specific functions or behaviors.

When creating goals and strategies for implementing vision habilitation in childhood, it’s important to consider all these factors to motivate both the child and the parents to participate in the sometimes lengthy and challenging therapeutic process.

Building Trust

Establishing a relationship of trust with parents and the child is necessary for success, making them partners in process.

It’s important to educate parents/caregivers about the importance and meaningfulness of vision habilitation and primarily guide and empower them so they don’t lose momentum on this journey. Parents need to understand all the steps involved and why they are being taken.

Individualised Approach for Vision Therapy

Intervention needs to be planned and created in a way that meets the defined needs of the child, rather than exceeding them. Therefore, in intervention, we always start with what the child can do and gradually introduce new elements based on the child’s learning pace.

Activities are designed to meet also the developmental needs and motivation of the child, being optimally challenging to make the child feel successful.

The sense of achievement is a strong driver and motivator, encouraging the child to stay engaged. To ensure overcoming challenges, professionals need to be aware of when and how to provide support so the child doesn’t give up.

Incorporating Play and Fun

All vision habilitation activities should be conducted through play and in a fun way because children learn best through play. The choice of materials is also crucial; they should be visually stimulating yet enjoyable and motivating for the child.

Sustaining Motivation

By establishing a partnership, empowering parents/caregivers and the child, and creating individual goals carried out through fun activities and materials is the best way to maintain motivation in vision therapy/habilitation process.

Reda Achaoui: Effective Strategies for Encouraging Kids in Vision Therapy

How to get my kid to do vision therapy

Reda Achaoui

Orthoptist
Marrakech, Marocco

“How do I get my kid to do vision therapy?”. Getting your kid to do vision therapy can be challenging, but here are some tips.

Explain the Importance of Vision Therapy

Talk to your child about why vision therapy is necessary and how it can help improve their vision and overall well-being.

Set Goals Together

Set achievable goals with your child and track their progress. Celebrate milestone to keep them motivated.

Make it Fun

Incorporating games and activities into the therapy sessions to make them more enjoyable for your child is also a good idea.

Consistency in Vision Therapy

What about to stick to a consistent schedule for vision therapy sessions, and make sure your child understands the importance of regular practice. Praise your child for their efforts and progress during therapy sessions to encourage them to continue. We should also understand that it may take time for your child to adjust to vision therapy and see results.

Be Patient

Be patient and supportive throughout the process. Understand it may take time for your child to adjust to vision therapy and see results.

Seek Professional Help

And finally, if your child is resistant to vision therapy, consider consulting with a vision therapist or paediatrician for additional guidance and support.

Haris Grozdanic: Creating Engaging Experiences: Insights from Orthoptist

Vision therapy motivation

Haris Grozdanic

Optometrist Msc/Orthoptist
Haukeland University Hospital
Bergen, Norway

Thank you for the opportunity to contribute to your blog and answer the question “how do I get my kid to do vision therapy?” As an orthoptist , I specialize in diagnosing and treating binocular vision disorders such as amblyopia, squint, diplopia, and issues with convergence and accommodation.

My role involves not only examining but also actively engaging children in tailored vision therapy that can significantly improve the quality of life for children facing visual challenges.

Who is an orthoptist?

Orthoptist is crucial in prescribing targeted vision therapy exercises that improve convergence, increase fusional range, enhance accommodation facility and amplitude, and boost visual acuity in cases of amblyopia.

Engaging Children in Vision Therapy

In my opinion, the key to successful vision therapy lies in making it a positive and engaging experience for the child. Here’s how:

  1. Communicate Benefits Clearly: Start by explaining how vision therapy will directly improve activities that are important to them. For example, a child who loves baseball could see significant improvements in their game.
  2. Set Achievable Goals: Work with the child to set realistic, clear goals. This helps them understand the therapy process and recognize their progress.
  3. Celebrate Milestones: Acknowledging every small victory is crucial. It not only boosts the child’s morale but also reinforces the value of their hard work.
  4. Interactive Therapy: Using gamification and interactive tools makes sessions more engaging and less burdensome.This approach is particularly effective in maintaining a child’s interest and motivation.
  5. Involve Parents: Encouraging parents to be part of the therapy process is essential. Their involvement can help reinforce daily practices and provide essential support outside of therapy sessions.
  6. Regular Progress Reviews: Holding regular sessions to review progress with the child and their parents helps keep everyone informed and motivated. It ensures the therapy remains aligned with the child’s evolving needs and interests.

Conclusion: How do I Get My Kid to do Vision Therapy?

To answer the question on how to motivate kids to do vision therapy, the insights shared by these specialists offer invaluable guidance. Eye care professionals underscore the importance of making therapy both effective and enjoyable. Through gamification, personalized goals, and interactive sessions, they emphasize the vital role of engagement and regular progress monitoring.

Moreover, involving parents as partners in the process is highlighted as essential for sustained motivation and success. As we face challenges of vision therapy, let’s learn from these strategies to empower our children towards clearer sight and better vision therapy outcomes.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why is commitment crucial in vision therapy, especially for children?

Konrad Abramczuk, an optometrist, emphasizes the significance of commitment in vision therapy. Learn why consistency and motivation are essential for successful outcomes.

How can parents make vision therapy enjoyable for their children?

Reda Achaoui, an orthoptist, shares practical tips for parents to engage their children in vision therapy. Discover strategies to incorporate fun and maintain consistency in therapy sessions.

What role do parents play in supporting children through vision therapy?

Haris Grozdanic, an orthoptist from Norway, highlights the importance of parental involvement in vision therapy. Explore how parents can communicate with their children, set achievable goals, and celebrate milestones to ensure therapy success.

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Why Do We Suggest a Minimum Time of 6 Months for Success?

Based on the data from over 15,000 patients using AmblyoPlay, improvements start within 4 months, while optimal results take anywhere between 6-18 months on average. The duration of required training depends on the patient’s age, the severity of the problem, accompanying diseases, and adherence to the training program.