What is Behavioral Optometry?

Good vision is much more than just 20/20.

Even if you have 20/20 (with or without correction), there could still exist other deficiencies in the visual system that would go undetected during a simple test for visual acuity. And if these deficiencies continue to go unnoticed, they could eventually lead to problems with acuity. So a person could end up needing glasses (or stronger glasses) when the real causes of the problem are going uncorrected.

Problems in these other areas might cause some of the following symptoms: double vision, headaches, tiredness, poor depth perception, difficulty concentrating while reading, eye strain, burning, stinging, dry eyes and more.

Balanced visual functioning requires that the eyes move easily from point to point and work together as a team, that the brain can effectively use peripheral vision and that the brain can easily process visual information.

Using glasses that were prescribed after only a test for distance or near-point acuity could very likely lead to further visual stress. If there are other undetected visual problems that remain unaddressed, this could lead to prescriptions that get stronger and stronger, deteriorating vision and a general feeling of discomfort and fatigue. All of which could set the stage for even more serious eye problems to develop.

That’s why it is so important to get a complete and thorough examination from a doctor who understands the interconnectedness of all aspects of vision.

Here is a list of the vision checks and tests that a behavioral optometrist will most likely perform during the first visit:

    • Measure distance vision with an eye chart.
    • Determine how your eyes function at close range.
    • Measure the teamwork between your eyes and your brain.
    • See how smoothly your eyes move from point to point.
    • See how smoothly and easily your eyes follow a moving target.
    • See how easily each eye can shift focus from near to far.
    • Screen for medical conditions like glaucoma and cataracts.

My trifocal glasses were scratched and unusable from abuse –  Dr. Mietus gave me a great solution with contact lenses  – the right eye prescription was for reading and computer work, and the left eye was for distance.  It worked perfectly and I don’t have to wear glasses or readers!

Stan S.


Links for more information about Vision Therapy