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After a long road of confusion.. I really need some insight
#1
Hey Everyone!
In this post I introduce myself in a fairly long manner. If you don't feel like reading it all then skip to the last 4 paragraphs. Smile

I started to realize I had myopia when I was 13 years old and it became harder to see the board.
I then learned about the Bates Method. It was like a dream that come true. I tried sunning, palming and lots of the other exercises which involved moving the eyes around, However my vision still continued to get worse.
I was then advised by some adults that these methods are scams. One of the things that made me very skeptic was that these so-called visionimprovement sites claimed that the only reason students' prescriptions worsen every year is due to eyeglasses, while I know I never wore glasses and my vision continued to worsen nevertheless!

I am 17 years old now. Last week I talked to one of my teachers who is only 24 years old about my problem. I really admire her and respect her. When I told her, she became very serious and told me that the most thing she regrets in her life is that she refused to wear her glasses and used to squint to see the board and that this has caused her vision to be terrible now.

When I went home I told my parents that my eyesight has been bad for the last 4 years.
They were a bit surprised as to why I didn't tell them. I explained that I thought I could improve my vision naturally and they started laughing.

I've been wearing my glasses for about a week now. I honestly think I look good in them, However I see them as being unnatural and don't want to have to wear them for the rest of my life.
Recently I posted a thread on the getting stronger forum and got a response from someone called OtisBrown who Advised me to try print-pushing and plus-lense therapy. It seemed fairly convincing to me.The potential hazards I read about it here though, scared me away.

I then read some of the articles on this site about the bates method and it's nothing like what i read before. It's nothing like the palm for 1 hour everyday and you'll see results kind of stuff.
The problem is I don't understand what I have to do exactly. It's all very confusing. Everyone has different ideas about how to improve vision.
Some people on this site don't believe that vision can be improved and even some others that believe vision can be improved say limit their beliefs cilliary myopia and not the axial myopia in which the eye elongates which I think I have.

Please give me your insights about what should I start with. If that's hard then give me a link I could start with reading. or tell me about your journey of improving your vision and what you started with that has given you improvements. Also would you recommend I stick with OtisBrown and his plus-lense therapy?

As for my social status, (cause I heard stress etc. matters.) I'm a happy person in general. I wouldn't say I'm the most popular person in my school but I see my self as being unique. The closest thing to describe me would be a "cool nerd" if that makes sense.
Oh and Btw my prescription is -2 diopters in both eyes.
Thank you, all your comments are appreciated Smile
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#2
TruthSeeker Wrote:I was then advised by some adults that these methods are scams. One of the things that made me very skeptic was that these so-called visionimprovement sites claimed that the only reason students' prescriptions worsen every year is due to eyeglasses, while I know I never wore glasses and my vision continued to worsen nevertheless!
It was the same with me, although at a younger age. I think Bates teachers tend to be a bit off-base on that point.

TruthSeeker Wrote:I am 17 years old now. Last week I talked to one of my teachers who is only 24 years old about my problem. I really admire her and respect her. When I told her, she became very serious and told me that the most thing she regrets in her life is that she refused to wear her glasses and used to squint to see the board and that this has caused her vision to be terrible now.
That's just as dubious as the idea that glasses make your eyesight worse. Young people who do wear glasses often need to get stronger glasses.

TruthSeeker Wrote:I've been wearing my glasses for about a week now. I honestly think I look good in them, However I see them as being unnatural and don't want to have to wear them for the rest of my life.
Sorry to say this, but you should stop wearing them now, if possible. Even if glasses don't cause your vision to get worse, they could still prevent it from improving.

TruthSeeker Wrote:Recently I posted a thread on the getting stronger forum and got a response from someone called OtisBrown who Advised me to try print-pushing and plus-lense therapy. It seemed fairly convincing to me.The potential hazards I read about it here though, scared me away.
Try print-pushing without any glasses, plus or minus. If you're -2, chances are that you can move print back far enough that it starts to blur.

TruthSeeker Wrote:Oh and Btw my prescription is -2 diopters in both eyes.
-2 is still mild on the myopia scale. A behavioral optometrist told me that 2 diopters is about the limit of what can be improved. If you can find a behavioral optometrist, s/he could give more insight about your specific case (I don't necessarily accept what he said about the limitation, but that's not a concern for you.)
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#3
Some practical tips: if you want to do your eyes a big favor, get outdoors as much as you can. Outdoor activities have been proven by modern researchers to help prevent and slow the progression of myopia. Also, it may be the [i]intensity[i] of nearwork that is more associated with worsening vision, not necessarily total duration. Keep reading material off your nose, in other words, as far away as is comfortable, and don't spend lots of time in continuous reading - break it up frequently, letting your eyes look into different distances. Keep moving, avoid being stationary. Imagine nothing to be stationary.

Your teacher obviously didn't know anything about natural vision improvement. Not wearing corrective lenses is the first step, learning how to use your eyes correctly is the second. Simply removing lenses does not imply you have learned anything about using your eyes correctly.

Dr. Bates did not follow conventions. It did not matter axial/ciliary, it was all the same to him. Those are terms used by those who subscribe to the conventions of eye doctors and optometrists schooled in the classic traditions. The Bates method is for all. Start by reading the intro to this site, David gives lots of insights into the role of central fixation. Study the Bates magazines, and above all, learn what relaxes your own mind the most. The only work this involves is finding what works for you, what helps you relax, and stop trying to help your vision in counter-productive ways.
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#4
Thanks a lot Daniel for taking your time to read through my post and answer a lot of my questions!
I'll limit the use of the minus lenses to only when the professor is explaining something on the board and will take them off afterwards. This will limit their use to 5-6 hours a week. I don't believe that just not wearing glasses can cause vision to deteriorate. However, doesn't not wearing them when you need to see something at a distance strain the eyes? From what I've read a large part of the bates method is about how relaxation of the eye helps vision. Isn't squinting and straining your eye to see at a distance the opposite of this concept

Daniel Wrote:Try print-pushing without any glasses, plus or minus. If you're -2, chances are that you can move print back far enough that it starts to blur.

Will do! Can you explain to me how to do it? Do you mean just static reading from the 'edge of the blur' or does it involve movement.

As for arocarty I'll try what you've mentioned. But won't playing an outdoor sport and focusing into the distance strain my eyes even further? When I study, I read as far away as it is comfortable and look away at a far object every 5-10 minutes. Also do you approve of print-pushing? As for central fixation it really confuses me. It causes me to focus harder and strain my eyes. I read that I should imagine an object in my mind but I don't understand how that helps. Will read all the articles written by David now.

Thanks a tonne for your replies! Smile
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#5
Quote:But won't playing an outdoor sport and focusing into the distance strain my eyes even further?
The key to all this is to learn to look without straining, whether in the distance or up close. Interesting that you assume looking in the distance means to strain. I'd see if I could loosen this belief, learning to look in the distance in an easy relaxed way, whether things are blurry or not at first.
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#6
TruthSeeker Wrote:However, doesn't not wearing them when you need to see something at a distance strain the eyes? From what I've read a large part of the bates method is about how relaxation of the eye helps vision. Isn't squinting and straining your eye to see at a distance the opposite of this concept
You're probably right. That seems to be a catch-22 of the Bates method.

TruthSeeker Wrote:
Daniel Wrote:Try print-pushing without any glasses, plus or minus. If you're -2, chances are that you can move print back far enough that it starts to blur.

Will do! Can you explain to me how to do it? Do you mean just static reading from the 'edge of the blur' or does it involve movement.
Maybe someone who's actually done it from around your level could explain it better. As nearsighted as I am, print-pushing is difficult. I would think you'd mainly try to keep it on the edge of the blur, perhaps moving it back and forth a bit just to experiment.
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#7
I repeat, you can strain with glasses or without them, looking up close or looking in the distance. And you can look in a relaxed way with glasses or without them, looking up close or looking in the distance. A big first step is to become aware when you're straining. Then you can try to let go of that behavior. If you really need to see something quickly, like in school on the board, give it a second without your glasses first, then if you still can't see it well enough put them on, then take them off again as soon as you can. All the while pay attention to how you're using your eyes. Are you trying to see or letting yourself see? This takes practice, like anything else worthwhile.
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#8
Daniel Wrote:Maybe someone who's actually done it from around your level could explain it better. As nearsighted as I am, print-pushing is difficult. I would think you'd mainly try to keep it on the edge of the blur, perhaps moving it back and forth a bit just to experiment.


Ok thank you. Smile

Nancy Wrote:The key to all this is to learn to look without straining, whether in the distance or up close. Interesting that you assume looking in the distance means to strain. I'd see if I could loosen this belief, learning to look in the distance in an easy relaxed way, whether things are blurry or not at first.

I agree. Looking back at what I've written, I tend to assume that just looking into the distance means straining the eyes.

Nancy Wrote:A big first step is to become aware when you're straining. Then you can try to let go of that behavior.

That is exactly what I've been doing today. Today I stayed at home for the most part, bought some stuff from the pharmacy next to our home and walked my dog. All without glasses. I found that I didn't my eyes while doing any of these although they involve looking into a distance. The only time I felt I strained my eyes was while I was walking my dog and a friend called my name from far away and I tried to see who he was. I believe the only time I strain my eyes is when I can't see something and I try to force my self to see its details. I'll try to stop doing that.

I think it's very impressive that you've managed to improve your vision from 2/200 to being able to pass DMV tests! Can you explain to me how you could get from around 20/100 to 20/45 ?

Thanks for your comment Smile
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#9
TruthSeeker Wrote:However, doesn't not wearing them when you need to see something at a distance strain the eyes?
You're already straining!... and as Nancy has said, it's about becoming aware of that strain and learning to stop it, let it go. If you think looking into the distance without perfect vision is going to make your vision worse, demonstrate it to yourself. If you have an eye chart, set it up at a distance of 20 ft, and note the smallest letters you can read. Spend some time working with the chart - palm, close your eyes, relax, breath, do some swings, each for a few minutes at a time. Look at the chart again for a brief time, and see if you see more letters, or can't see the ones previously seen. Is your vision getting worse? Is it about the same? If you are really straining more, the chart will tell right away. Before you follow or make assumptions like this it's good to demonstrate to yourself if it holds true for you. It's really hard to make your vision worse, actually, harder than it is to make it better. If you can do this, make your vision worse, you can gain significant insight into your eye problems. Most cannot though, even when they try.

arocarty Wrote:Also do you approve of print-pushing?
It doesn't matter if I approve of it or not, people are free to do whatever they want. I sure wouldn't endorse it, especially given the wild claims based on sketchy premises. Advocates claim it is so scientifically based, yet when asked for real scientific evidence demonstrating it can reverse myopia, never reply. All the real scientific evidence of plus lens usage demonstrates that it can only slow the progression of myopia, and only a tiny bit at that.
Looking at familiar letters, the smallest that can be seen, at increasing distances is at the heart of the Bates method. They are not seen perfectly at first, one has to tolerate a certain amount of blur while working with the techniques.
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#10
Checking my Snellen chart is a bit confusing for me. I fear that sometimes I might be reading the letters from memory rather than really seeing them. I could read the 20/70 line sometimes, even then the 20/100 line is not that clear. Heck even the Big E at the top is not that clear! I sometimes wonder if I would have been able to notice any difference between the capital F and the capital P on the 20/100 line, if I didn't know they were different. I'm thinking about getting a new Suellen and never looking at it except from the 6 meter range. That way I will be able to certainly tell when I can legitimately see the 20/100 line or the 20/70 line. But then again flashes of clear vision might screw that up.

I've never tried swinging and shifting as I don't really grasp their concept or understand how to do them. Will try to read about them and see if I can understand them.
Also I'll try to acknowledge whenever I'm straining my eyes again and will try to let it go. I really like the concept of dancing with the blur the idea of not trying to force my eyes to see 20/20 all the time.

arocarty Wrote:Looking at familiar letters, the smallest that can be seen, at increasing distances is at the heart of the Bates method. They are not seen perfectly at first, one has to tolerate a certain amount of blur while working with the techniques.

I'm not sure what that means. Smile May you please explain it to me in other words.

Anyway, I'm very happy about this forum. I really like it that everyone tries to help and share what works for them, sincerely. It's nothing like some other eyesight improvement forums, where I feel like I'm having a conversation with automated bot, who keeps trying to force his method upon me and doesn't really read anything I type.

Thank you once again. Have a Great day Smile
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#11
Well,

I can give you some insight.
First of all understand that there is a physical defect, and not to negate that. As insisting too much that there is a problem with the mind makes you ignore the problem in the physical level. Understanding this will make it easier to accept that you see blurry at the moment.

The physical defect is the strains you are holding on your face and around eyeballs. If you have wore glasses for sometime the glasses themselves, sometimes, makes you get "used" to them, I mean have an unconscious fear that you will not be able to see without them, so keep them near, know that you can use them anytime, but you don't have to.

The mental side is that, you will become more open to the world around you, there has been something that has made you go into your shell and avoid making contact with the world around, you, find out what that is and release it. One thing I understand is that releasing those mental relations to the world around you becomes somewhat difficult because you still see blurry. Accept that and release it.

Imagine what it can be like to have completely normal vision, what does it feel like? This will bring up any resistance you have towards seeing. Is it anger? Is it shame? Is it feelings of unworthiness? These emotional blocks need to be release if you truly want to experience to joy of seeing.

And as I have pointed out in my other posts, the nose plays a key role in seeing, and I firmly believe that if you want to see really you need to see by using your nose, not you eyes. Most people with normal vision do not see with their noses, they see either by the right or the left dominantly. if you train yourself to see with your nose, you will be balances and more peaceful. The nose is our connection point from our face to the world around us.

Also at last I want to point that people that draw themselves inward by straining to see tend to have a harder relation to the world, for example notice how you type at the keyboard, are you pressing strongly or softly? Do you press your pen to the paper firmly or hold it lightly and let it flow? I clearly remember that when I was about 9 years old I was developing a habit of pressing too strongly on my pen. I did not realize back then why, but it seemed to me that I like it, but I did not know back then that I am expressing my withheld anger toward the pen, and I think that was a starting point to lose my clarity.

Ah, I forgot, and to shift to looking to things from you nose tip, the practice of shifting does the trick. Shift your "attention" to the tip of you nose, and to some object, near, distant, or where you are comfortable at, this will gradually "loosen" the muscles that hold your face strained and you will certainly love it, as you will feel that you are becoming more real, and looking at thing from your genuine self. And don't be surprised if you suddenly see things much brighter than normal, it is quite fun. Seeing things through your nose helps you balance the right and left hemispheres of the brain, and makes you quite peaceful.

Good Luck and Have Fun and Smile a lot, it really helps!
Elias
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#12
TruthSeeker Wrote:Checking my Snellen chart is a bit confusing for me. I fear that sometimes I might be reading the letters from memory rather than really seeing them

When working with Bates techniques you WANT to memorize, and work with familiar letters. Memory, imagination, and vision are all interrelated. The more perfect you can remember or imagine a letter, the more perfect it will be seen. If you make working with the techniques a constant test, you will quickly get mentally defeated (and physically). That wasn't at all the point of Bates when using eye charts. It was to help restore the working relationship between those three functions, to use the power of memory and imagination to restore vision. Doesn't matter to me if I've memorized what's on what line, I KNOW when I can recognize the letter, I KNOW if it can be distinguished. I can't fool myself, if I'm being honest with myself. Sure, there are different levels of clarity to the letters, but one first should work with being able to distinguish what they are. Level of clarity will follow in time. As you get better at distinguishing larger letters, work with the smaller ones which cannot be distinguished. Look at flashes as a blessing, not as something that 'screws' things up. Become aware of how it they happen, especially your mental thoughts at the time, and remember the feeling of relief. You eyes are going to undergo a lot of fluctuation, as you are trying to counter years of incorrect habits and usage.
If you want to test your vision occasionally with an unfamiliar chart, that's fine. But save it for when you feel you've really made some progress with your familiar one. But remember, failing to see an unfamiliar one isn't a test of your overall vision, just a snapshot at that moment. It does not dictate how you are seeing throughout the rest of the day. Eyecharts are pessimisms to most people, and while you may improve significantly, you can then crumble quickly into old, bad straining habits when trying to recognize the unfamiliar one. That's just about mental control, not about your overall vision. If you didn't know that, you may entirely defeat yourself by testing your vision as such. This is not a test!!! never forget that.

TruthSeeker Wrote:arocarty wrote:

Looking at familiar letters, the smallest that can be seen, at increasing distances is at the heart of the Bates method. They are not seen perfectly at first, one has to tolerate a certain amount of blur while working with the techniques.


I'm not sure what that means. Smile May you please explain it to me in other words.

Using a familiar chart (or anything with good contrasting letters or detailed symbols on it), first distinguishing it at the near point, then gradually increasing your distance as you can, up to 20 feet. Bates should have called it 'chart pushing.' Using two, one at the nearpoint, and one that is moved gradually farther away is another good technique to practice. The memory and relaxed state of looking at the near one helps bring out the letters of the more distant one, first in flashes.
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#13
elias Wrote:The physical defect is the strains you are holding on your face and around eyeballs. If you have wore glasses for sometime the glasses themselves, sometimes, makes you get "used" to them, I mean have an unconscious fear that you will not be able to see without them, so keep them near, know that you can use them anytime, but you don't have to.
I can relate to that! Even though I almost never wore glasses. I think I had the fear that I needed to get glasses or otherwise I won't be able to see.
Thank you so much Elias. That is very helpful information. I'll try the shifting you've mentioned too!
Also. Is seeing by your nose somehow related to central fixation?


arocarty Wrote:When working with Bates techniques you WANT to memorize, and work with familiar letters. Memory, imagination, and vision are all interrelated. The more perfect you can remember or imagine a letter, the more perfect it will be seen. If you make working with the techniques a constant test, you will quickly get mentally defeated (and physically). That wasn't at all the point of Bates when using eye charts. It was to help restore the working relationship between those three functions, to use the power of memory and imagination to restore vision. Doesn't matter to me if I've memorized what's on what line, I KNOW when I can recognize the letter, I KNOW if it can be distinguished. I can't fool myself, if I'm being honest with myself.

So using memory and imagination to see is absolutely fine and is part of the bates method. Alright. I'll also stop using the snellen to constantly test myself as I now realize that defeats the purpose.
Will also try the "chart pushing" haha ;D
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#14
TruthSeeker Wrote:Thank you so much Elias. That is very helpful information. I'll try the shifting you've mentioned too!
Also. Is seeing by your nose somehow related to central fixation?

So glad that it helped you.
Of course, yes, central fixation, means balance at its core level. Balance in your life, in your face, in your body, etc ... it will all boil down to "love".

Most people have the right eye as their dominant eye, you can search the web to see what the dominant eye means. So most of us are left brain people. By central fixation you are actually balancing your brain, left and right, and you will see that your true vision is through your nose, and then all the problems related to bad sinuses, etc will vanish, and the true central fixation can be experienced. You will be altered personally so that you might get more interested in art and music, as you will also find out you hear and see better.

Actually Bates can be classified as a real genius, that he was able to discover this principle in such a dark era, era of war and depression.
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#15
elias Wrote:Most people have the right eye as their dominant eye, you can search the web to see what the dominant eye means. So most of us are left brain people. By central fixation you are actually balancing your brain, left and right, and you will see that your true vision is through your nose, and then all the problems related to bad sinuses, etc will vanish, and the true central fixation can be experienced. You will be altered personally so that you might get more interested in art and music, as you will also find out you hear and see better.
Ok thank you!
Do I always need to do central fixation consciously. A lot of times I find I don't pay much attention to my vision. Does it become a habit after a while? Or should I try to always pay attention to my vision. I've seen arguments for and against this. Some people say that we should "try to see", while others argue that people with normal vision observe there surrounding passively.

Also do you have any tips for protecting my eyes from close-work? I've got a lot to catch up with and I expect to be doing a lot of close-work studying in the next 2 months. At first I thought I would do print pushing while studying but now I'm not so sure if that's actually a good idea.
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