Oh boy, just when I thought we were starting to get a handle on some of the issues DS is struggling with he's thrown a new one at us.
Last week he mentioned out of the blue that he often sees two of things, and has since started pointing out things he sees two of. He says it happens when the light changes and that he sees two of the whiteboard at school. Looks like we may finally have an explanation of why he hates spending any time looking at the white board. So far he's said it gives him a headache but has not been able to explain why.
Anyone else's ASD child have anything like this? Just wondering whether it's really eye related or whether it's more sensory processing stuff.
Either way next week we're off for an eye test. Will be interesting to see how that goes, since he's not generally every cooperative and doesn't often speak to people who he does not know well. Still I've spoken to the optician who says they are happy to give it a go.Next option is the hospital but that's likely to take months to get an appointment, and TBH it's not like we've had much more success with his appointments there.
So over the next few weeks I'm expecting
meeting with school about transition to the next year
hospital appointment about ongoing hip pain
another tip to the dentists (we went last week) for a filling
follow up with the doctor about medications to help bladder control (daytime first, then night time).
Phew, he does keep us on our toes.
Pull up www.irlen.com
My formerly ASD son has Irlen syndrome, a well researched and documented brain processing problem, which produces a sensitivity to certain light frequency which can cause headaches, visual disturbances like halo's, seeing double and wavy lines. It is a well researched brain processing problem. It is not a visual processing problem and eye doctors do not usually screen for it unless they've received special training. You need to find an Irlen screener who will screen and if needed prescribe tinted lenses. It works. My son's headaches and reluctance to read went away and still to this day, 5 years later, he wears tinted lenses as he claims that without them he will quickly get a headache.
It's an easy problem to fix if it's Irlen.
Interesting, I've not read much about this before but a lot of the signs on that website do describe DS. As it happens the optician we're booked at does also do screening for tinted lenses so it sounds like we're going to the right place.
My brother has a couple of complicated eye conditions, which both cause double vision and seem to run in families so we did have a bit of a panic when DS first mentioned the problem.
Well the eye test was nothing short of a disaster.
DS fell asleep in the car and wet himself. Since we didn't have spare clothes with us DH went off to see if he could find anything locally while DS ended up sat on my lap to save the furniture.
He read the eye chart to me, while the optician popped out to sort out some paperwork, but refused to do anything while she was in the room. He did put his face to one of the machines, but not for long enough for her to see anything.
I'm debating my options now
rebook at the same place - they do the tinted lenses but are 1/2 hour away and didn't seem that great with him. Although the odds were stacked against them.
book into our local place - as it's only a couple of minutes away at least he won;t be worked up by the journey but they don;t do any specialist testing.
ask for a referral to the hospital - long waiting time but they may be in a better position to deal with him when we get there (although my previous experience of the children's hospital is not that good).
Will probably do a combination, ask for the referral and keep trying with the opticians while we wait.
In my area we have had evaluations done by an optomatrist which is a doctor of optomatry. I believe that an opthamologist is an MD with an eye speciality (in my opinion not the best choice for pediatric developmental problems as someone who does lasik which is an important skill does not always have the skill set to evaluate a child) An optician is the person who makes glasses.
We have an area school of optomatry where it is easy to get an appointment because they run a clinic, the very earnest, well learned 3rd year students are doing their clinic hours and evaluating the children and they are supervised by their teacher.
They have pediatric evaluations that test for muscle strength, tracking and convergence issues.
In my experience, an Irlen evaluation is not just the provision of a tinted lense. Most opticians will make a tinted lense. Blue lenses in particular have been found to be calming for children with sensory integration issues and often OT's will suggest them. An Irlen evaluation literally goes through all the tints available, hundreds, and ask the child which they read better with, which reduce or eliminate the brain processing issues like blurring, wavy or double vision, and then the lenses get made in the Irlen lab in California.
In my experience it really helped....really.
We've also used vision therapy...but as you've seen, the evaluation and the therapy require a child to be an active part of the process.
I'd suggest you not waste your time with a place that's can't work with his unique presentation. See a pediatric optomatrist trained in screening for developmental vision problems and is comfortable and experienced seeing children with special needs. You may be able to find a person like that from your local SEPAC or through other moms.
OP, went through this with ASD son a couple of years ago but nothing came or it following testing. It turned out, after some discussion, that it was something he was mostly seeing if looking through curved glass (like a car window at an angle), through rain or other distortions. We never had an answer, but it settled on its own.
Busy keeping up with three children and an awful lot of chickens!
It seems that there are not actually problems with his eyes (my main concern given the family history) and his vision is pretty good. No glasses needed on that front (phew, I wasn't looking forward to the challenge of getting him to wear them).
He seems to be able to control the double vision to a certain extent. Certainly the optician was able to watch DSs eyes and predict when he could see one or two of the picture. and if asked DS did seem to be able to concentrate and see just one (which fits with what he's mentioned before). So basicly he's seeing double when he defocuses, like looking at a magic eye picture.
Apparently it's quite common when people are tired, it's also possible it's a reaction to sensory overload. The theory there being that because if he does it he'll see more of a background blur it's sort of switching off the overwhelming details. This makes sense to me in terms of when he mentions it happening, in terms of particular times at school.
So for now we're going to focus on getting more support in place in school and trying to reduce his stress there. We've always known that he finds school stressful but as his response has always been to shut down and go quiet I think we've let it go too much. Realising that he has probably been shutting down to this extent is however suggests to me the issue is bigger than we thought.
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