MARQUETTE TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WLUC) - According to the American Optometric Association, more than 80 percent of classroom learning comes from vision.
So if a child is having vision problems, their schoolwork can suffer.
Seven-year-old Dustin Skerbeck travels from Escanaba to the Superior Eye Health and Vision Therapy Center in Marquette Township once a week for vision therapy.
"Being here the last few weeks, he's starting to improve, he's building more confidence with reading and it's been a really positive experience," Dustin's mom Cindy Skerbeck said.
Before starting therapy, Dustin was experiencing double vision.
"It's where the words split apart and they're super blurry," Dustin said.
According to the College of Optometrists in Vision Development, 1 in 10 children have a vision problem severe enough to affect their learning in school, but school vision screenings can miss up to half of these problems. That was true in Dustin's case. He passed his school vision screening.
"I never thought there was an issue until he started learning to read," Cindy Skerbeck said. "A teacher brought it to my attention and we went to an optometrist in Escanaba and they referred us here."
Vision therapy is a type of physical therapy for the eyes and brain.
The eye exercises don't actually exercise the physical muscles of the eye, they improve the visual skills needed for your brain to properly process information.
"Studies show that when improve those visual skills, our ability to process that visual information is more accurate," Neuro-Developmental Optometrist Dr. Heidi Johnson said. "You have to point your eyes at what you're getting the information from, and so that's where we help students, is to know how to point, move their eyes and gather that information efficiently."
After eight vision therapy sessions, Dustin said the world is now less of a blur.
"My eyes are working together more," Dustin said.
For more information on the Superior Eye Health and Vision Therapy Center, visit their website.