It may be your eyes:
Reading and Learning Disabilities

How Binocular Vision Dysfunction Affects Reading & Learning

Do you struggle with having words run together, losing your place, or skipping lines while reading? Does this difficulty prevent you from being able to concentrate or sit still? The stress and challenges associated with learning and reading difficulties can make life taxing. Not being able to read or comprehend the words on the page makes it almost impossible to learn. Many of our patients have been diagnosed with ADD, ADHD, dyslexia, and/or convergence insufficiency and have sought help from medications, doctors, and other treatments. If you have not obtained adequate improvement from your other approaches, and are overwhelmed and still looking for relief from your reading and learning disability, it may be time to investigate another possibility – that you may actually be suffering from Binocular Vision Dysfunction. How binocular vision dysfunction affects reading & learning.

It Could Be Your Eyes

Vertical Heterophoria (VH) is a form of Binocular Vision Dysfunction (BVD) characterized by a subtle vertical misalignment of the eyes. While this misalignment can be very subtle, it can make it incredibly difficult for our eyes to send one clear image to our brain. Here’s what happens when someone has VH: With two eyes, we are able to see one clear image. This is because our brain is able to transform the images seen by each eye into a single image, which is known as binocular vision. In patients with VH, there is a slight misalignment between their eyes resulting in their eyes being out of sync with one another, causing the brain to have a very difficult time processing those two separate images to form one clear image. The result? The brain forces the eye aligning muscles to fix the problem by realigning the eyes. But the realignment is only temporary and misalignment then recurs, which is followed closely by realignment, and the cycle of misalignment and realignment continues. Over time, this places an immense amount of strain on the eye muscles and leads to dizziness, clumsiness and difficulty with coordination and depth perception. How binocular vision dysfunction affects reading & learning.

Binocular Vision Dysfunction and Reading & Learning Difficulties

Your eyes depend on being synchronized with one another in order to see clearly. Binocular Vision Dysfunction is a condition where there is a subtle misalignment of the eyes which can cause blurred, shadowed, or possibly double vision if left unchecked. When you have difficulty reading and comprehending the words on the page, it greatly diminishes the ability to succeed in school or work. These symptoms are common to many of the conditions that our patients have been diagnosed with, including:

Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) and Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD):

People suffering from ADD and ADHD struggle with their ability to sustain attention. This makes it difficult to read and to comprehend what has been read. Many children and adults are being prescribed medications to help them concentrate better; however, the issue with reading and comprehension might actually be a problem with vision misalignment. People with Binocular Vision Dysfunction experience blurred, shadowed, or possibly double vision making reading very difficult. They also live with a chaotic visual field, making reading and paying attention extremely difficult. Our young patients often tell us the “letters and words ‘swim on the page’ or ‘vibrate’ or ‘shimmer’”. When you are unable to read or comprehend the information you stop paying attention, and may even become hyperactive. Vision alignment achieved using specialized aligning glasses allows you can see clearly without stress and strain and calms the visual chaos, making visual tasks easier. Once you are able to clearly see the words in front of you, concentrating and sitting still becomes easier.


Dyslexia is often characterized by jumbled letters, trouble with word sequences, and spelling. These same symptoms are found in our patients with Binocular Vision Dysfunction. When the reading difficulty is due to a vision misalignment, aligning lenses reduce the blurred and distorted vision and words can be seen clearly and in order, easing or eliminating the reading disability.

Convergence Insufficiency:

Convergence Insufficiency is a vision misalignment condition where bringing the eyes together (converging) is hard to do, leading to an overworked vision system. Because you struggle to bring your eyes together, near-vision activities like reading can be incredibly difficult. However, many of the symptoms caused by Convergence Insufficiency are also common to patients suffering from Binocular Vision Dysfunction. When the traditional treatments do not provide you with reading disability relief, you may actually be suffering from Binocular Vision Dysfunction. The specialized aligning lenses bring images together, making it unnecessary for the eye muscles to strain to bring your eyes together. This allows you to see clearly and to focus on the words in front of you, providing you with reading and learning disability relief.

At Vision Specialists of Michigan, we understand the difficulties that accompany learning and reading challenges. Our compassionate doctors will complete a thorough NeuroVisual Examination to determine if your difficulties are actually the result of a vision misalignment. The results will determine the extent of your vision misalignment and will allow us to prescribe specialized aligning lenses. Unlike your standard eyeglass prescription, our lenses treat your Binocular Vision Dysfunction, along with any additional vision impairments, to allow your eyes to work together. Without the blurred, shadowed, or distorted vision you can see words clearly, providing reading and learning difficulties relief.

Suffering from reading and learning disabilities makes it difficult for you to be able to learn and comprehend important information at school and work. Let us, at Vision Specialists of Michigan, help you with your Binocular Vision Dysfunction. Complete the screening questionnaire or contact us today to determine if we can help you experience reading and learning disability relief.

Want to learn more about Binocular Vision Dysfunction?

Watch these videos of BVD patient experiences:

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It may be your eyes

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It may be your eyes

  • American Academy Optometry
  • American Optometric Association
  • Michigan Optometric Association
  • VEDA
  • Neuro Optometry Rehabilitation Association