FOSTERING Clinical EXPERTISE, RESEARCH & EDUCATION
What are prism lenses?
Also known as yoked prisms or ambient lenses, it is the specific way a lens is ground so that it transforms light and displaces gravity. In our office they are used as a part of the therapeutic process; transforming stimulus in visual processing interpretation.
Prisms can be prescribed in various positions and in various magnitudes. They can be used to focus an individuals attention inward, ideal for individuals with focusing or attention problems or prisms can conversely be used to expand one's visual fields, such as in cases of compressed or "tunneled" vision. They can also be utilized in cases of midline shifts and visual field preferences. Prisms are positioned at precise angles, therefore only upon examination will our doctors determine which angle and magnitude is most suitable for that patient’s needs.
Prisms are frequently used in cases of convergence insufficiency, double vision, strabismus, amblyopia, concussion, strokes and other traumatic brain injuries. They also create profound visual spatial and visual processing effects for individuals with neurodevelopmental and visual-motor disorders, such as autism, cerebral palsy and down syndrome.
What is vision therapy?
Also referred to as visual management, therapy involves procedures tailored to each patient’s unique needs; ranging from developmental or academic performance to troubling asthenopic (medical) symptoms, such as headaches, motion sickness or vertigo. Progress is monitored weekly and procedures are systematically enhanced as to continuously meet the goals created by and for our patients.
Our approach does not train the visual system in isolation, however centers around our total physiological makeup. Visual management exercises include, but are not limited to centering (focusing) techniques, spatial/peripheral awareness exercises, movement based visual-vestibular and motor planning techniques, as well as visual-auditory-motor integration techniques. Patients are shown the exercises in-office and are then required to follow through on those exercises at home daily.
When is there a need for both prism lenses and vision therapy?
The goal in a visual management program is to enhance the individual’s performance and proficiency. In combination with prism lenses, exercises allow the patient to develop a perceptual and performance change that will become a permanent shift. The goal is to no longer need exercises or to wear prisms lenses. Generally, a combination of lenses and a therapy program accommodate individuals diagnosed on the spectrum, developmental delays, learning disabilities, strabismus, motion sickness, tunnel vision, behavioral and/or emotional disturbances. Individuals who combine the use of prism lenses with a visual management program reach automaticity sooner than those who go without.
My child's symptoms are quite severe- or because of age we wonder if the symptoms are embedded. How do I know if this will work?
Our office’s experience precedes our reputation and because our providers have unique developmental training, age is not a factor for examining or providing therapy to our patients. We have also successfully rehabilitated individuals on all ends of the spectrum, including autism, schizophrenia, depression, learning disabilities and anxiety disorders. Individuals with moderate or severe impairments are often our biggest success stories.
We encourage you to reach out to our office to learn more about how we have helped others in similar cases. In addition, please take a moment to read parent testimonials here on our website, as well as our social media accounts where you'll also have access to videos created by our office or submitted to us by parents.
How is your center's work different from that of other optometrists or ophthalmogolists?
Approximately 10% of optometrists specialize in behavioral optometry (also known as developmental optometry). Amongst these doctors, many work with prism lenses, while others do not. Some offices may provide vision therapy in conjunction to lenses, while other offices do not use lenses as a part of their therapy. Each practitioners methodologies are based on their education and unique clinical experiences. Our office is specialized in the visual aspect, as well as the developmental, educational and social-emotional needs of our patients.
A week also doesn't go by where we aren't asked to explain the philosophies between surgery and/or patching, versus vision therapy. The reliance on surgery or patching to treat conditions such as strabismus stems from the outdated belief that lost neural synapses cannot regenerate. Of course, evidence over the last several decades has proven that the neuromotor system can and indeed does so.
Surgery is merely concerned with the cosmetic alignment of the eyes-- offering nothing on retraining the neural system to use both eyes together. Therefore, the etiology of the strabismus will remain well after surgery (or multiple surgeries) are completed. While many families are told "surgery is the only option," the reality is surgery and/or patching are NOT the only option. Vision therapy addresses the problem by addressing its neural roots.
What insurances do you take?
At this time, our office accepts Medicare for examinations and therapy, as well as (straight) Medicaid for examinations and materials, such as frame and lenses.
We also accept out of network assignment on eligible services from vision care providers, such as VSP.
It is otherwise the patient’s responsibility to make payment on the date of service. As a courtesy, our office will submit invoices and claim forms directly to your insurance company on your behalf. Within just a few short weeks, you should receive an update (or hopefully a check) from your insurance company. Parents and/or patients will also be supplied with their own copies of all relevant forms and invoices.
In addition, we are happy to provide you and your insurance company with clinical records and a letter of medical necessity.
Patients encountering hardship are encouraged to contact our office for a sliding scale application. Those requiring a payment plan are encouraged to apply for a CareCredit healthcare card. CareCredit is a credit card designed to pay for the costs of medical treatments. For complete details of financing terms, please review the CareCredit website and account agreement within the application.
We are happy to discuss insurance eligibility, sliding scales and CareCredit with patients in greater detail if you wish to call us with questions.
How does the office communicate with long distance (out-of-state and international) patients?
Our office frequently works with "long-distance" patients, including families traveling domestically and internationally. An office based evaluation is required and our staff will schedule you appropriately, allocating enough time for the services specific to your needs.
After your visit, our office has a particular protocol for maintaining communication and therapeutic programming. When parents provide us with the information we need, patients are monitored very closely and with great success.
Visual, DEVELOPMENTAL & EDUCATIONAL Services for your entire family