In ‘Fixing my Gaze’ Susan Barry describes the marvels that brain plasticity has brought to her life through engaging in optometric vision therapy and overcoming strabismus. It also made clear that vision is not something that can be isolated from the rest of the body or brain, since vision is the major source of sensory input and affects the way we think and everything we do. Neuroplasticity is the new Buzz word and I was wondering how far this principle goes and what implications it has, not only for vision care, but also for other kinds of brain disorders. ‘The Brain That Changes Itself: Stories of Personal Triumph from the Frontiers of Brain Science’ by Norman Doidge provides many of the answers or partial answers to that question. Even though not dealing with vision as such, sensory plasticity is also covered in the book.
I found out about the book through a Youtube review which can be watched below. The review is thorough but is in no way a substitute for reading or listening to the complete book.
Another video I want to share related to this book is an interview with the author Norman Doidge. Something particularly troublesome to me is when asked whether these discoveries are finding their way to conventional medicine the answer is ‘Not quite’… This is really too bad because applications of the paradigm shift discussed in this book open up the possibility of treating people of all ages who are suffering from countless neurological and psychological disorders in new more effective ways and by doing so augment the quality of life of those patients considerably.
This book also reveals once more how much ahead of its time developmental or behavioral optometry really was when developing the practice of visual rehabilitation or vision therapy at the beginning of the 20th century and refining it over the years. I totally recommend this book to anyone interested in the brain and especially to Vision Therapy patients who are doubting or are in need of renewed motivation. Also available as audio book!