The Future of Vision Care is Reforming Itself –
– Even if we don’t see it yet!
After listening to Sir Kenneth Robinson share how the current education system is not meeting the needs of the youth today, I was reminded of how the vision care system is not fulfilling an equivalent need.
Unlike the relatively simple lives of the past, and the balanced use of the eyes, today we live in one of the most complex periods on Earth. This complexity is both a blessing and a curse. We can feel bombarded with information, or feel elated by new possibilities and choices.
The visual sensory system has a way of dealing with excessive information. Not to see, to block. The ‘information era’ consumer of vision care creatively uses the extra information to gain new ways of taking self-responsibility for their eyes.
Doctors of Optometry, Ophthalmology and vision scientists are acculturated into a method of taking care of eye problems based on an older deductive process of science.
The problem of the eye is measured in a narrow and precise way. An equally focused treatment is provided.
For example, If the eye is measured as nearsighted, then science says that the problem is a long eyeball. The logical solution is a minus lens that diverges light into the eye to obtain focus. This approach paralleled the development of ‘proof-oriented’ medical science. That is, the long eyeball causes the nearsightedness.
Many patients are being ‘medicated’ with excessively strong lenses because of the Doctors insistence on relying on this outdated system of vision care. The next logical question is to ask what causes the long eyeball? Science explains this as too much close work, not enough natural light and video games etc,
Today, science can implicate the rise in eye problems to the excessive digitalisation of our world, computers, smart phones, video games etc. This makes logical sense.
In spite of the advancement in vision science, the current system of vision care does not provide a complete solution to the ever increasing incidence of problems in the eyes. The statistics speak clearly.
What is needed is a change in thinking.
Optometry and Ophthalmology are providing symptomatic relief. What is missing is in the current vision care system is the broadened view of control and prevention.
The current mind set of the frustrated consumer is that there eyes continue to have more problems. With the advent of internet, millions of people are finding their own self-help solutions from freely available information. This is seen in the expanded use of alternative medicine and organic food produce.
This is the future, NOW. The patient wishing to take ownership of their health and well being is how a new paradigm and system of vision care can be designed and put into place. The current delivery system of eye care will need to transform it’s mind set in order to meet the needs of the new consumer demand.
What is and will this demand be?
– The consumer of vision care identifies less with the authoritarian posture of the eye doctor. The patient seeks a partnership for their visual well-being.
– A group of Optometrists, who provide vision therapy have a system in place for guiding their patients to improving visual function and performance. This system needs to expand into a wellness and prevention model.
– In addition, a step into an integrated and holistic approach would add a much needed and valuable system for vision care. In this model, the patient is viewed as a total person. This expanded view includes the person’s genetic influences, their family dynamics, job demands and the stress factors of their life.
– Along side the science of vision there is a place for lifestyle methods for perceiving how to live correctly according to their individual Eyecode® needs.
There is new and improved approach to vision care. One that uses another form of intelligence than just the academic science point of view. The new system makes use of divergent thinking, what Sir Kenneth Robinson calls “…the essential capacity for creative thinking”. This is not the normal linear convergent method of looking for one answer to a problem.
The divergent way is an artistic ‘broad brain’ approach that provides multiple answers to questions. This system requires cross discipline collaboration and divergence. In the example of nearsightedness, prescribing a lens will not stop with the thinking of how does the light focus at the back of the eye. By being aware of other disciplines, it soon becomes apparent that focused light increases the thinking part of the human and downplays feelings. In addition, excessive minus lenses leads to lower levels of efficiency in binocular vision. This lack of integration is not just in the eye, but throughout the whole life view of the patient.
The new system of eye and vision care will address all these parts of the patient’s lives when a diagnosis and treatment plan is outlined. The improvement in vision function and performance will coincide with the patient making new choices for correct living according to the code of the eye.