Optometry today is much more advanced than the traditional practice where everything was limited to your eyes and correcting the vision. Today, it is done considering several other factors, including your behavior! This is called behavioral optometry and the doctor involved is called a behavioral optometrist. The job of a behavioral optometrist is to consider different other aspects related to your vision and visual demands. These include:
- Reading power and habit
- frequency of Working on computers and even
- the habit of reading or writing.
The job of the behavioral optometrist is to ensure that you are comfortable with your vision and you can do your work properly.
The concept of behavioral optometry does not restrict to the clarity of your sight. This can be done easily by measuring the eyes on a distance chart. The job of a behavioral optometrist involves much more than that, such as:
- Measuring the focus
- Looking for issues in eye coordination and
- Determining optimum visual comfort and level of performance.
They are also responsible for assessment and determining treatments for different issues in the eyes such as:
- Lazy eye or amblyopia
- Turned eye or strabismus
- Eye movement ability
- Reading fluency
- Vision perception and processing and
- Different health and neurological issues.
A behavioral optometrist follows the Optometry Code of Conduct and Code of Ethics while working on enhancing your visual system.
Difference Between Neuro and Behavioral Optometrist
There is a significant difference between the jobs done by an optometrist, a neuro-optometrist, and a behavioral optometrist, though all graduates from an accredited school of Optometry. A behavioral optometrist is also called a developmental optometrist and the types of care provided by them is different from the others.
- A vast majority of optometrists consists of general optometrists who are responsible for conducting eye exams and provide prescription glasses and contact lenses. They may also treat minor emergencies like an infection in the eyes.
- A neuro-optometrist works on the sub-specialty area of visual care. They deal with contact lenses, diseases, and pediatrics, all related to neuro-optometry. They may also work in the capacity of a general optometrist.
- A developmental or behavioral optometrist works on alternative medicine and follow unorthodox practices and ideas to enhance visual process.
Though the unconventional practices of the behavioral optometrists are not reinforced by research, they can successfully cure binocular vision dysfunction. The duration of treatment by them will be longer than those methods followed by a general or a neuro optometrist. This is because the treatment methods are often experimental and unproven.
When to Contact A Behavioral Optometrist
You can usually visit a developmental or pediatric or a behavioral optometristfor a specific vision or visual therapy that needs to be customized according to the needs of your child. Their treatment methods and tools may include unconventional items such as:
- Balance boards and
- Different computerized photographic activities.
There are other different home programs designed and used by the behavioral optometrists that are easy to follow and supervised by the parents. These programs are in addition to the in-room treatments provided by these professionals in their practice.
Though the activities and treatment methods of a behavioral optometrist may not be helpful in curing learning disabilities in a child, it can surely help a child to develop visual skills most efficiently. This will in turn help the child in developing and strengthening the functional eye skills for a better coordination with his or her improved motor skills. Therefore, if you find your child getting tired quickly in class, it is time to consult with a behavioral optometrist. They will tell you whether or not your child is really suffering from ADHD and needs to consult a specialist.