VISION THERAPY OF SAN ANTONIO
BECOMING A BEHAVIORAL OPTOMETRIST
Finding and Heeding My Purpose When I graduated high school and started at Texas Tech University, I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life. My dad
After nearly 10 years of practicing in Houston, I needed a change, and I moved to New Hampshire. While this move gave me the change I wanted, it also meant I had to start all over. I didn’t have a lot of patients at first, but I got an opportunity to relearn different practice methods that would greatly benefit my patients. It opened my eyes to a new way of practicing called Behavioral Optometry. Instead of the routine of prescribing glasses, I started to address visual discomfort by paying more attention to how well a person’s eyes focused together. Feedback from my patients was unbelievable. People started telling me that they weren’t experiencing heavy migraine headaches anymore and that they could read and comprehend a lot easier. I knew I was onto something and decided to concentrate more heavily on eye coordination problems. While working in New Hampshire, I teamed up with an occupational therapist, who wanted to learn more about helping children who were having a difficult time reading in school. If any patients I saw were having coordination problems with their eyes, I would send them her way. By combining occupational therapy with optometric vision therapy, we saw tremendous improvement in reading and learning. Even though I, and all optometry students, learned about this during training, I didn’t know its effectiveness. It was the first time I saw just what vision therapy could do for people, and I felt compelled to pursue it.
encouraged me to go for a degree in business management, but at the end of school, I felt like I wasn’t prepared for anything. That’s when I started looking for something else and began to think about my options in health care. Neither medical nor dental felt like my true calling, but one day it just hit me: vision. This career path meant adding two more years to my undergrad and four more in optometry school, but it was well worth it. I received my optometry degree in July 2000 and leaped into my career as an optometrist. In my first practice, I did what many optometrists do: prescribe glasses and contacts all day long. This routine had its issues, though; often, the limited exam time allotted for each patient wasn’t long enough to discover other vision problems that might have been more subtle. Prescribing glasses did help them see, but there was something more that kept them from seeing as well as I knew they could.
I moved to San Antonio in 2012, and I joined a practice that gave me further opportunities to grow as a behavioral optometrist. I bought my own private practice in 2015, then purchased another doctor’s vision therapy practice a year later. I renamed it Vision Therapy of San Antonio, or VTSA. Shortly into my ownership of VTSA, I was approached by an experienced vision therapist, Melody Lay, who asked to join my team. At the time, business was slow. I was worried I couldn’t afford to hire her, but I knew I needed Melody on my team. Together, with my other therapists, Wendy and Jessica, we have worked tirelessly to spread the word about the effectiveness of vision therapy in the San Antonio community and beyond. Our practice has grown by leaps and bounds in the last three years, and we hope this newsletter helps you learn more about helping someone you know!
“IT WAS THE FIRST TIME I SAW JUST WHAT VISION THERAPY COULD DO FOR PEOPLE, AND I FELT COMPELLED TO PURSUE IT.”
Melody Lay is part of our highly experienced and dedicated team here at Vision Therapy of San Antonio. Her passion and efforts show daily as she works with each patient in therapy. Melody, working side by side with Dr. Jason Deviney, helps people improve their lives through vision therapy. Melody’s passion for helping others started in college, where she earned her degree in Special Education from the University of Tennessee. Her interest in optometric vision therapy started when her oldest son experienced difficulty in school. “I was working in early intervention when I was introduced to vision therapy through a friend who was my son’s Developmental Optometrist,” Melody says. “As I watched my son struggle less in school through the process of vision therapy, I was hooked. That was 12 years ago, and it changed the course of my career.” Melody’s experience includes working with children who have binocular vision deficits and learning challenges and adults who have dizziness and brain injuries. During her 12 years, she completed continuing education from the top doctors in the field of optometry. In 2013, she earned her Optometric Vision Therapy certification. In 2017, she met Dr. Deviney, and their combined passion and vision to serve San Antonio was realized. Together they make up the most experienced team in the area with a combined experience of 21 years treating patients in this specialty. INTRODUCING MELODY LAY Director of Vision Therapy Services “At Vision Therapy of San Antonio, we pride ourselves in changing lives, and our amazing team is a big part of that. Every patient has a different story for what brought them to us, whether they’re a child struggling in school or an adult trying to recover from an injury. I love being a tiny part in the change process.” When Melody finds time outside of the office, she enjoys spending it with her family. She is married to Stephen, and together they have four boys, three of whom are triplets. Attending performances and sporting events with her boys keeps her busy. She also enjoys hobby photography and quilting.
HAYRIDES AND HEADLESS HORSEMEN Halloween Celebrations in Sleepy Hollow In 1790, a school teacher named Ichabod Crane was riding home alone from a harvest festival in the village of Sleepy Hollow when he encountered a mysterious rider on horseback. Crane, horrified by the horseman’s missing head, turned and ran in the opposite direction. The Headless Horseman gave chase, hurling his own decapitated head at the terrified teacher. Ichabod Crane was never heard from again ... or so goes “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow” by Washington Irving. This story, first published in 1820, has become a Halloween favorite. The legend is so beloved that in 1997, the village of North Tarrytown, New York, where many events of the story take place, officially changed its name to Sleepy Hollow. Today, the town becomes one big Halloween party during the month of October. Sleepy Hollow is home to many historic landmarks, including the Headless Horseman Bridge and the Sleepy Hollow Cemetery, where Washington Irving himself was laid to rest. Evening lantern tours of the cemetery are a popular attraction, and Irving isn’t the only spooky celebrity buried there. Fans of the Gothic soap opera “Dark Shadows” will be delighted to enter the crypt of famed vampire Barnabas Collins. Another highly anticipated stop for many guests is Sleepy Hollow’s premier annual attraction, Horseman’s Hollow, an experience not for the faint of heart. During the event, the 300-year-old Philipsburg Manor is transformed into a living nightmare, where vampires, witches, ghouls, and undead soldiers lurk in the shadows. They all serve the dreaded Headless Horseman and are determined to make sure guests don’t leave alive! But it’s not all scares in Sleepy Hollow. There’s plenty of Halloween fun for all ages. Sleepy Hollow boasts relaxing hayrides, tours of Irving’s home, live readings of famous
Halloween stories, performances of a brand-new musical based on
Irving’s spooky tale, and the Great Jack O’Lantern Blaze, an incredible exhibition of over 7,000 hand-carved pumpkins. If you want a real Halloween experience, you can’t go wrong in Sleepy Hollow. Just be careful not to lose your head!
A FUNCTIONAL VISION PROBLEM
The Culprit for an ADHD Misdiagnosis?
decides whether or not their child should be on ADHD medication, they should consider a thorough examination to ensure a correct diagnosis. This will help their child receive the best treatments for their unique needs.
About 11% of children living in the U.S. are diagnosed with ADHD, which equates to well over 6 million children. Many are diagnosed correctly, but many are being misdiagnosed. Often, people don’t realize that a child with vision problems has the same symptoms as a child with ADHD.
FUNCTIONAL VISION PROBLEMS Functional vision refers to a person’s visual system, which includes not just the eyes but also the brain and visual pathways. These three functions work together to help a person see and comprehend the world around them. Three skill areas that develop in functional vision are eye teaming, eye focusing, and eye movement. When one of these skills is underdeveloped or not functioning properly, it can cause visual discomfort, focusing problems, and difficulty fixing on an object. FUNCTIONAL VISION AND LEARNING The differences between a child with ADHD and a child with a function vision problem are hard to distinguish due TAKE A BREAK
to their similarities. A child who has function vision problems will have a hard time paying attention both in and out of school. At home, they have trouble completing their school work, often spending hours trying to get through it or giving up entirely. Children who find it difficult to see the words on a page clearly may have a dislike toward reading. Emotions of frustration, fatigue, and restlessness are all symptoms of someone who has ADHD, as well. THE CHILD’S NEEDS The only way to correctly diagnose a child who may have ADHD, a functional vision problem, or both is to have them examined and tested. Before a parent
This silky caramel recipe is spiked with miso for a complex, rich snack that won’t hurt your teeth. Inspired by Bon Appétit MISO CARAMEL APPLES
1. Heat oven to 275 F. 2. In a food processor, pulse pistachios and 1 1/2 tsp sugar. Add sesame seeds and 1 tbsp miso, pulsing until miso is fully broken up. Spread evenly on a rimmed baking sheet. Bake for 15–20 minutes and let cool. 3. Meanwhile, insert a Popsicle stick into the center of each apple. 4. In a saucepan, bring corn syrup, 1 cup sugar, and 2 tbsp water to a boil. Boil for 5–7 minutes, swirling infrequently, until caramel is a light amber color. 5. Add cream and salt to caramel, whisking to combine. Transfer to a large mixing bowl and quickly whisk in remaining miso. 6. To assemble, first roll apple in caramel, then in pistachio mixture, before resting on greased baking sheet. 7. Let cool 30 minutes and serve.
4 Granny Smith apples
1/2 cup raw pistachios
1 1/2 tsp plus 1 cup sugar
3 tbsp sesame seeds 2 tbsp white miso, divided
4 Popsicle sticks
2 tbsp light corn syrup
AUTUMN CANDY CARVE COSTUME
SCARECROW HALLOWEEN OCTOBER ORANGE
PUMPKIN FOOTBALL HARVEST LEAVES
1/4 cup heavy cream 1/4 tsp kosher salt
PRST STD US POSTAGE PAID BOISE, ID PERMIT 411
(210) 822-0900 VISIONTHERAPYSA.COM
VISION THERAPY OF SAN ANTONIO
84 NE LOOP 410, SUITE 140 SAN ANTONIO, TX 78216
THIS ISSUE 1 2
Helping People See the World Meet Your Team! The Real Legend of Sleepy Hollow Vision Problems and ADHD
Miso Caramel Apples The Secret to a Perfect Jack-O’-Lantern
5 Tips for Longer-Lasting Jack-O’-Lanterns
Jack-o’-lanterns are an iconic part of the Halloween aesthetic, but they can quickly backfire. If you carve your pumpkins too early, you may end up with a moldy mess on Halloween. The first rule of jack-o’-lanterns is to wait as long as possible before you start carving. Here are some other tips to help you achieve the perfect jack-o’-lantern this year.
CUT FROM THE BACK. Cutting the top of the pumpkin is traditional, but it removes the stem, which helps keep the pumpkin fresh. It also threatens the structural integrity of the pumpkin. Cutting from the bottom is not good, either, because all the liquid inside the pumpkin will ooze out. For the best results, carefully cut a hole in the back of the pumpkin. APPLY PETROLEUM JELLY. After you’ve scooped out all the “pumpkin guts” and carved your masterpiece, apply a little petroleum jelly to the cuts. This will help seal in moisture. The Farmers’ Almanac also recommends spraying your pumpkin with anti-humidity hairspray to lock in freshness.
FIND THE PERFECT PUMPKIN. A great jack-o’-lantern starts in the
pumpkin patch — or in the grocery store if you’re short on time. Look for a fresh pumpkin with a sturdy, green stem, no bruises, and a flat bottom so it’s stable when you’re carving. Size and shape aren’t important, so long as the pumpkin sparks your creativity. Just make sure you don’t accidentally bring home a small sugar pie pumpkin, which will be harder to carve. WASH YOUR PUMPKIN. Before you start carving, mix 1 tsp of chlorine bleach with 4 liters of water and wash your pumpkin to help prevent mold. Be sure to wear gloves!
GO ELECTRIC. Using a real candle heats up the inside of the pumpkin, causing it to decompose faster. An LED tealight with a flickering effect will create that classic spooky jack- o’-lantern look and keep the pumpkin cool. Plus, you don’t have to worry about any trick-or-treaters getting burned if they accidentally trip over your pumpkin. These tips are to help your jack-o’-lantern last longer. When it comes to designs, feel free to let your imagination run wild! The best jack-o’-lantern is one you’re proud to show off on Halloween.
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