How to regain sight after a stroke: Rehab at home
Strokes may cause a partial or complete loss of sight. This type of brain injury is the most common cause of vision loss in the adult population. Luckily, this loss of vision isn’t necessarily permanent. It is possible to recover sight through intense therapies and exercises. We’ll tell you how to regain sight after a stoke.
Exercises to improve sight after a stroke
-Pencil exercise: This is an energetic visual exercise that may help to train the brain to properly receive visual stimuli. To start, hold a pencil (or similar object) 2 feet in front of the patient’s eyes. Start moving the pencil up and down, and then from side to side, while the patient follows the pencil without moving their neck.
You can also move the pencil forward and backwards to the nose while the patient watches it. Another idea is to hold a pencil in each hand at different distances and ask the patient which one is closer.
-Do drawings or brain teasers: Draw some shapes but don’t finish them. Let the patient fill in the missing parts. Completion games (like words or puzzles) may also be helpful because the brain has to work to identify objects through sight.
-Do vision exercises: There are some exercises for the eye muscle that have improve how the eye follows an object. You can try putting 3 fingers on your upper eyelid and closing your eye. This will strengthen the eye muscles.
-Regain vision by throwing balls: Throw a ball around with the patient. It will work their vision and reflexes.
Therapies and medicine to help regain sight after a stroke
-Compensatory vision therapy: This therapy stimulates the brain area that’s in charge of sight. The exercises include working with prisms, field of view, how to move objects and images in and out of the patients field of view.
-Restorative vision therapy: This type of therapy restores the neural connections that are used in sight. It is centered around training a point of the eye that has a lot of these connections and usually has a high recovery rate.
-Ocular surgery: This surgery isn’t usually very useful to regain sight after a stroke because it’s not cause by a physical problem in the eye. However, you can still fix problems with double vision that may show up after a stroke. Before going through this process, talk to a specialist.
Molly is a writer specialized in health and psychology. She is passionate about neuroscience and how the brain works, and is constantly looking for new content from interesting sources. Molly is happy to give or take advice, and is always working to educate and inspire.
This post is also available in: Spanish