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Vision Problems after Concussion


Concussion and Vision Problems

Vision Difficulties after Concussion:


Visual symptoms can be yet another problem after a concussion.


These symptoms are not often related to the structure of the eyeball but in the neurological systems involved in vision. However, an appointment with an optometrist is a good idea if you notice visual symptoms after a concussion.


So here are some of the visual symptoms people experience after concussion:


Light Sensitivity:

Sensitivity to bright light after a concussion can lead a person to wear dark sunglasses for relief, and certainly as a brief measure in specific circumstances like a trip to the grocery store, this makes sense.


More issues can arise if a person begins to lean more and more on the relief that dark sunglasses afford. People begin to use a short term solution as a long term strategy.

They begin wearing the dark sunglasses more and more. They begin to wear them indoors and for all types of light situations.


Unfortunately this can result in greater and greater light sensitivity.


This could be because the pupil system gets less and less practice constricting to reduce the amount of light entering the eyes, and instead practice staying enlarged to let in adequate light to see in the darkened situation that the sunglasses provide.


For some people, the problem of light sensitivity is related to the source of light.

Fluorescent lighting may be poorly tolerated but incandescent lighting may not be a problem at all.


Sensitivity to electronic screens can be related to the brightness, but may also be related to the colour of light or the flicker rate on a computer monitor.



Blurred Vision:

Sometimes people report intermittent blurred vision after a concussion.

This could be provoked by a certain amount of time with near vision work like reading. It might be provoked by repeated near – far work like looking up to the front of the classroom then looking down to a laptop or paper for notes repeatedly.



Reading Difficulties:

Some people will experience symptoms like the words running together or overlapping, or it may seem like the lines of text twist or turn slightly. Of course blurred vision can be a problem as mentioned above. A person may also experience headaches after a certain period of reading or near visual work. It may be difficult to remember what was read, but this may be more of a cognitive problem than a specific vision problem. Some may find reading on an electronic device is poorly tolerated but reading on an e-reader feels fine with its e-ink / e-paper technology. For some, it’s the busy visual scene of text on a page that creates difficulty.



Electronic screens:

Other than the sensitivities mentioned above, there can be difficulties with sensitivity to scrolling on a screen, or sensitivity to visually searching around on the screen if there are multiple items to be looked at repeatedly. Using multiple monitors can similarly sometimes cause problems.

Again, the colour of light can be a problem and some people find some relief in changing the screen settings to night mode with a more yellow hue.



Visual motion sensitivity:

Some people, after a concussion, are sensitive to movement in the environment like when walking through a crowd in a mall. Similarly, symptoms can occur when looking around on shelves of a grocery store or a dollar store environment with its narrow aisles.



Final thoughts:

As you can see, there isn’t going to be a one-size-fits-all solution in addressing the visual difficulties that might arise after a concussion. The strategies and exercises that are implemented need to be individualized for each person to encourage a more efficient recovery from concussion.


Please continue browsing the blogs to learn more.


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