Difficulty with attention is a symptom, not a diagnosis, according to Dr. Lane. Discovering why a person is having a hard time is Dr. Lane’s goal in working with people who have attention concerns. Many children who struggle with attention for near and academic tasks have a vision problem. Research has shown that children with attention concerns have a 3 fold higher likelihood of having a vision problem known as Convergence Insufficiency. In the presence of Convergence Insufficiency, a person physically can’t efficiently point the eyes at near. Eye strain, double vision and headaches are very common. Many children will simply refuse to look at near because they know if they do it will hurt and be confusing. When a person can’t see clearly or consistently, attention to tasks is virtually impossible. Addressing functional visual issues before labeling a child with a behavior disorder is often a complete game changer for the child and for the family.
Not every person with attention problems has a vision issue. Not every person with a vision issue has attention concerns. But, attention concerns and vision issues tend to coexist in 1/3 of the time! When attention is a concern vision should be considered.
Dr. Lane routinely recommends that diet and medical issues be addressed in addition to addressing vision issues.