If convergence insufficiency isn't causing symptoms, you generally don't need treatment. But for people with symptoms, treatment with eye-focusing exercises can increase the eyes' convergence ability.
Treatment, which can take place in the office of a trained therapist or at your home, might include:
- Pencil pushups. In this exercise, you focus on a small letter on the side of a pencil as you move it closer to the bridge of your nose, stopping as soon as you see double. The exercise is often done for 15 minutes a day, five or more days a week.
- Computer vision therapy. Eye-focusing exercises are done on a computer using software designed to improve convergence. You can print the results to share with your eye doctor.
- Reading glasses. Glasses with built-in prisms generally haven't proved effective. If you have another focusing or vision problem, such as not seeing well close up (farsightedness), reading glasses might help.
Recent studies indicate that office-based therapy with home reinforcement is the most effective treatment for convergence insufficiency. Home-based treatment with pencil pushups or computer programs hasn't been shown to be as effective. But home treatment costs less and is more convenient and more readily available.
Treatment for convergence insufficiency might take three months or longer. Treatment can resolve convergence insufficiency, but symptoms might recur after illness, after lack of sleep, or when you're doing a lot of reading or other close work. Discuss treatment options with your eye care professional.
July 15, 2017
- Convergence insufficiency. American Association for Pediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus. https://aapos.org/terms/conditions/38. Accessed April 6, 2017.
- Lavrich JB. Convergence insufficiency and its current treatment. Current Opinion in Ophthalmology. 2010;21:356.
- Borsting E, et al. Improvement in academic behaviors after successful treatment for convergence insufficiency. Optometry and Vision Science. 2012;89:12.
- Scheiman M, et al. Non-surgical interventions for convergence insufficiency. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews. http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/14651858.CD006768.pub2/full. Accessed April 6, 2017.
- Scheiman M, et al. Home-based therapy for symptomatic convergence insufficiency in children: A randomized clinical trial. Optometry and Vision Science. 2016;93:1457.