An eye doctor visit is the simplest method for determining your vision problem. However, I must warn you right away that very few doctors can objectively approach the topic of vision exercises. Don't let this discourage you. The purpose of this visit is solely to determine your vision problem, and that's what you should ask your eye doctor for. It's not only about identifying basic vision problems like nearsightedness or astigmatism, but also issues like convergence problems, strabismus (including hidden forms), or amblyopia (lazy eye). Therefore, it's worth choosing a good doctor, preferably private, who will determine all your vision problems without unnecessary discussions.
During an eye examination, the doctor will usually also check the pressure in your eyeball and determine if you suffer from diseases like glaucoma, cataracts, etc. In case of an atypical or severe vision problem, ask your eye doctor if you can safely perform the exercises presented here.
This website is not responsible for performing the exercises presented here. In any case, consult an eye doctor to make sure that performing these exercises is safe for you.
An eye doctor will usually perform a computerized vision test to preliminarily determine your vision impairment. During this examination, astigmatism, in particular, i s determined accurately and usually better than the doctor can do it themselves. It's best to choose a well-reputed optician/optical shop to ensure that the equipment is up-to-date and the results won't be too distorted. However, even if the results slightly deviate from reality, it doesn't bother us because we only want to know the scale of the problem for the generator's needs. We also advise against undergoing this type of examination too often to check if our vision has improved. The minimum interval should be six months, preferably one year. You don't need a machine operated by a human (sometimes better, sometimes worse) to determine your progress. Your body, eyes, and experiencing good vision will tell you if the applied techniques are beneficial. Hanging a Snellen chart in your room with constant lighting will also be sufficient to determine your progress in vision treatment.
Although we sincerely encourage you to use the methods described above to determine your vision problem, we will now provide ways to do it yourself. Remember that self-determination of vision problems can be highly inaccurate, but we're not looking for precision, just identifying the type and size of the problem, which will allow you to use the generator on our website and create a set of exercises.
Usually, we shouldn't have a problem determining the basic vision defect. If we have trouble reading at close distances, we have farsightedness (if under 40 years old) or presbyopia (if over 40 years old). If, however, our vision problems occur at long distances, and we have no trouble reading up close, we suffer from nearsightedness.
We can more accurately determine the basic vision defect using a Snellen chart by placing it 6 meters (20 feet) away and attempting to read the line of letters marked with 6m. If we can do this, we don't have a problem with nearsightedness. However, if we cannot see the letters in the 20/20 (6m) row, we check which row of letters we can read. Let's say it's the row marked 20/40 (12m), which means we already have a small nearsightedness defect - we can read from 6m what healthy eyes see from 12m. For the generator's purposes, you can assume that a visible row of letters from 20/25 - 20/40 (small nearsightedness), 20/45 - 20/70 (medium nearsightedness), 20/100 - 20/200 (large nearsightedness).
Perform the above test with each eye separately, which will determine the difference in defects between the eyes. With a large difference, greater than one row on the chart, we have a "lazy eye" or amblyopia.
To determine the astigmatism defect, we will use the "astigmatic mirror" image. Use the image on a monitor or a mirror board and look at it from a distance where you can see the lines clearly. If you have astigmatism, some lines will appear darker, thicker, or seem more spaced apart. If all lines are equally straight and black, you don't have to worry - astigmatism is not your problem. Now look at the astigmatic mirror from different distances, as some people have astigmatism only at certain distances. The distance you look at the image should be sharp. Results outside this area are uncertain.
The astigmatic mirror is also a great image for checking your progress in fighting astigmatism. You can use it after each astigmatism exercise to observe how they affect the quality of your vision.
To determine problems with eye convergence, we will use a string or elastic cord.
To check if we have proper coordination and convergence of our eyes, we attach one end of the string to a door, for example, and hold the other end in our hand at the tip of our nose so that the string is taut. We place a few markers (e.g., beads) on our string, at equal distances. When you look at any bead, you should see phantom lines that cross exactly where the bead is. Some people see these phantom lines with the bead as an X, others as a Y or an A. The shape is not as important as the fact that the lines should converge perfectly at the bead's location. If the lines converge before or behind the bead, you have an issue with eye convergence.
Now, look at the next beads, each time checking the point of eye convergence. If the phantom lines converge perfectly at the bead's position in each of the points, you don't have to worry - eye convergence problems don't affect you. However, if you've had a problem with this, don't worry. Convergence of vision can be effectively improved through exercises, which we highly encourage.
The exercise described here is a good mechanism for checking if the convergence eye exercises used are effective and how quickly our vision returns to normal.
With a large strabismus defect, it is visible enough that there is no problem recognizing it. It is important for proper exercise execution to determine the type of strabismus, i.e., in which direction our eye deviates. With small defects or hidden strabismus, the affected person often is not aware of this defect. Therefore, everyone should be examined for this issue, as early detection guarantees easier and faster treatment.
It is easiest to determine this defect with the help of another person, who can easily tell if one of our eyes deviates from the norm, veering in one direction. For the test, it's best to use a book or a board, asking the person being tested to observe a specific word or letter. Place the board about 20 cm from the person's face and gradually move it away. At each distance, carefully observe whether the eyes are convergent and whether one of them shows strabismus.
You can also use the method of covering the eye, alternately covering the left and right eye, preferably with a square piece of paper, slowly moving it from one side to the other. In the case of hidden strabismus, the deviating eye reveals itself at the moment of binocular vision loss, which can be observed by looking at the eye behind the paper.