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Why Optometrist test won't reveal partial progress
#1
This is why the Optometrist test won't reveal progress with the Bates Method...

I see people getting discouraged all the time when their prescription strength does not seem to decrease after practicing the method for a long time. Even though their VA has improved and they see a definite improvement... We are so much under the control of the Authority that we will start to believe that the improvement was all imaginary... and when you do, since vision is all a mental process, if you believe that you are just as "blind" as you were before you began your journey, you will be!

Anyhow, with Myopia this is how it works (I only understand it for myopia, but I am sure that hypermetropia could be explained somehow similarly, too.)
When glasses are prescribed, the optometrist is only interested in finding the focal distance where the vision is most accute.
-1 diopter = 1 meter
-2 diopters = 50 cm
-3 diopters = 33 cm
-4 diopters = 25 cm
-5 diopters = 20 cm
-0.5 diopters = 2 meters
(so the formula goes: 1 m / x diopters = the distance from your eyes where you can see most sharply)
Now the thing is, especially if you wore glasses for a long time, this distance of relatively most accurate vision will remain the same. That's because Visual Acuity improves for all distances, but until it reaches a permanent 20/20 or whatever they are trying to correct you to, the relative most accurate vision will still be the same distance from your eyes as before. What does change, however, is the difference in accuracy of vision between this most accurate distance and all other distances. And that difference should decrease.
There are other factors of course (mental) when it comes to getting yourself through an optometrist test, but for simplicity's sake, I hoped to give a more scientific explanation. Please let me know if it is easy to understand or I could explain it better.

Andrea
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#2
I think the real reason why most optometrists don't find any improvement in our visual acuity from one year to the next is that they only deal in physical measurements, not measurements of increasing control over our visual systems. So they believe that when they physically measure the length of the eyeball and the fixed focal power of the lens, they can thereby assign an appropriate mathematically-determined lens dimension to magically create permanent, fixed clear vision for all distances.

They don't really know how the visual system works or why lenses correct distance acuity - if they did, then once they calculated the measurements on eyeballs that are fully grown, they would not need to do the measurements again for decades or longer. The fact that fully-grown unchanged eyeballs need different and/or stronger lenses year after year after year is proof that they don't know what they're doing.
[The following was examined in all children after three months of life: pupillary reflexes, fixation, anterior segment of eyeball, eyeball length, fundus, intraocular pressure, and refraction. The examination was repeated when the children finished three years, and six years ten months of life. Skiascopy was performed with prior cycloplegia. Statistics were done using Mann-Whitney test for unpaired and Wilcoxon's test for paired results. The following conclusions were made: 1. Length of the eyeball was not related to the appearance of fundus or family history of myopia (Tab. 1). Growth of the eyeball could be divided into two periods. The first was fast, lasting until the end of the third year of life. The second was slow and by the end of the seventh year, growth was almost complete. In children with inborn near-sightedness, the eyeballs were already longer in the fourth month of life. 2. Average size of refraction after cycloplegia in six-month-old infants does not depend on the appearance of eye fundus or family history of near-sightedness. Between six months and three years of life, a limited increase in refraction took place, whereas between the fourth and seventh year of life a decrease was observed. This decrease was significantly greater in children with a family history of near-sightedness. In children with inborn near-sightedness, there was no increase in refraction and decrease proceeded at a faster pace. In six-month-old infants, reversed astigmatism predominated, but between the seventh month and fourth year of life it declined and between the fourth and seventh year its axis changed (Tab. 3 and 4). 3. "Reduced density" found in three-month-old infants is a morphological trait of the retina and does not predispose to near-sightedness. It occurs more often in children with blue or light gray color of the iris, i.e. with little pigment in the stroma (Tab. 6). In most cases, "reduced density" disappeared before the end of the third year of life (Tab. 5). In children with inborn near-sightedness it was not possible to assess on the grounds of the eye speculum whether the observed reduced density was caused by lack of pigment in the pigmented layer of the eyeball or by near-sightedness, or both.]

They also won't give the examinee enough time to demonstrate improved control over his/her focusing ability. If the examinee starts to do so, as I did in my last examination, they will switch to a different tactic: instilling atropine which freezes the pupil wide-open, and then using a different method of eyeball/lens measurement to make the calculation without the examinee's interference.

The truth is that our eyeball lengths are within the normal range for normal vision, and our lenses are within the normal size and shape and elasticity for normal vision, and the distances between our retinas and lens/pupil/corneas are normal, but we have been mis-trained or not trained at all in how to use/coordinate/synchronize them. Anyone who has ever had a flash of clear distance vision cannot be 'myopic' because that term precludes that ability - we are instead abnormally mentally fixated at the nearpoint. Nearpoint fixation is mostly an orientation/visual system usage disorder - not a physical disorder.

So I guess what I'm saying is, if you've ever had a flash of clear or much clearer vision, then going to most optometrists to fix your nearsightedness is like going to a podiatrist when you need braces for your misaligned teeth - he isn't going to be able to help you much.
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#3
Andrea Major Wrote:the relative most accurate vision will still be the same distance from your eyes as before.
Andrea

that is interesting. I never thought about it that way, and I think this is a great point to use to encourage people to keep going when their visual accuity has improved but the optometrist says no change in refraction error!

thanks!
sorrisi
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