In Praise of Parents Who Support Their Kids

If there’s one group that Dr. Rick Graebe admires more than the hard-working children he treats with Vision Therapy, it’s the parents who advocate for those kids.

Dr. Graebe, a behavioral optometrist in Versailles, often sees patients desperate for help because they’ve been told by other professionals that there is no hope.

“Just the other day, we saw a 6-year-old boy whose family had been told that there was nothing they can do about his amblyopia,” Dr. Graebe said.

Amblyopia is commonly known as lazy eye.

“He was told he could never play baseball,” Dr. Graebe said.

That is exactly the kind of patient that Dr. Graebe helps with Vision Therapy, which is a kind of physical therapy for the eyes, brain and body.

V.T. is a non-surgical treatment for many common visual problems such as lazy eye, crossed eyes, double vision, convergence insufficiency and some reading and learning disabilities.

That’s the technical description.

For Dr. Graebe, his practice is all about helping people reach their potential.

Because we live in a culture that requires strong visual skills for reading, and computer and close-up work, making the visual system more efficient will help the person become more productive and successful.

“That can mean reading better, doing better in school, making the first team in sports, doing better at work so that you can make more money, just helping people reach their potential,” Dr. Graebe said.

Vision Therapy works because the sequenced, hands-on, fun activities that are part of treatment help integrate the visual system with the other senses.

As Dr. Graebe says, Vision Therapy is simple but it’s not easy.

“If people do the work, they will improve,” he said.

That’s why he admires his patients who put in the time with V.T. – and the parents who strive to make a better life for their children.

“I always tell parents how much I appreciate their trust in me.

“I admire those parents who put their children’s well-being front and center,” he said.

For these parents, they put their finances where their values are.

Most insurance covers Vision Therapy but for those families who pay out of pocket, Dr. Graebe reminds them, “Vision Therapy costs about as much as a week-long family vacation at Disney World or as much as braces.”