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Double Vision FAQs

Double vision occurs when your eyes do not work properly together to provide normal binocular vision. Damage to the nerves and/or muscles controlling the eyes or refractive errors are the primary causes of double vision. Double vision can impact one eye or both eyes. In addition, you may experience double vision occasionally or struggle daily with double vision. Determining the cause of double vision involves visiting your optometrist in Kennewick and Yakima for comprehensive eye health and vision testing.

Double Vision

What is Diplopia?

Diplopia is the medical term for double vision. Images seen by someone with diplopia can be on top of each other, side by side or a combination of on top/side by side images. Most people diagnosed with diplopia see side by side images because of the binocularity of the eyes. Having astigmatism or other refractive errors can worsen mild cases of diplopia.

What Causes Double Vision?

Damage to eye muscles controlling eye movement is a common cause of double vision. Other reasons for binocular diplopia include:

  • Hypothryoidism/hyperthyroidism
  • Transient ischemic attack (lack of blood supply to the brain or eye nerves)
  • Aneurysm (may compress eye nerves)
  • Strabismus (lazy eye)
  • Keratoconus (corneal abnormalities)
  • Tumors (small tumors within or surrounding the eye can interfere with eye nerve functioning)
  • Diabetes/diabetic retinopathy
  • Head injury/concussion (you can have a concussion and not lose consciousness)

What Causes Double Vision in One Eye Only?

Monocular double vision is typically due to eye-related disorders, such as astigmatism, dry eyes, cataracts, macular degeneration or trauma to the eye. Eye fluids and blood may pool around the eye following a blow to the eye, causing pressure on nerves and muscles. Until swelling subsides, eye movements may be restricted enough to produce double vision.

How is Double Vision Treated?

If astigmatism or other refractive error is the cause of double vision, your Kennewick and Yakima optometrist will prescribe corrective lenses to improve vision. Thyroid disorders will require medication to regulate thyroid hormones. Cataracts can be removed through minimally invasive surgery that involves removing the lens of the eye and replacing it with a new lens.

Vision therapy can also eliminate double vision caused by strabismus, convergence insufficiency, lack of stereopsis and other similar disorders. An individualized program designed to enhance a variety of perceptual/vision deficiencies, vision therapy involves applying evidence-based procedures for "re-training" your brain's ability to optimally control:

  • Eye alignment
  • Eye movements
  • Focusing/convergence
  • Processing of visual information

Development of visual-motor skills with vision therapy are advanced by using special optical and computer devices, such as therapeutic filters, prisms and lenses. During vision therapy, your Kennewick and Yakima optometrist eliminates double vision while reinforcing and automating visual abilities through repetition and integration with cognitive and eye motor skills.

Schedule an Appointment with our Yakima and Kennewick Optometrist

If you are suffering double vision or need to have your eyes examined, please call Washington Vision Therapy at either location today to schedule an appointment.

Yakima: 509-654-9256
Kennewick: 509-416-0403


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