I originally met Dr. Deborah Zelinsky in 2014, when I presented for the Neuro-Optometric Rehabilitation Association (NORA). After my keynote presentation (watch here), she approached me with a whole lot of inspired encouragement for my mission and a desire to collaborate. I have been in touch with Dr. Zelinsky for years, and I am so impressed with who she is, the work she does, and her revolutionary approach to neuro-optometry.
Since then, I have participated in a few presentations and collaborations with Dr. Z, including the Society for Brain Mapping and Therapeutics annual conference where we did a round table discussion together (video below) and the Neuroplasticity of Visual Processing, where I presented alongside Olympic Hopeful Snowboarder, Kevin Pearce (picture below).
Since having her as my optometrist in the past year and a half, I have been more comfortable in a pair of glasses than ever before. Her approach is absolutely revolutionary.
Mark my words:
Dr. Zelinsky will be the catalyst to a revolution in eye exams… bringing 20th-century eye care to 21st-century brain care.
At the most recent NORA conference, Dr. Zelinsky discussed how different lenses, prisms, and filters change the way light bends and disperses across the retina and the resulting impact on a patient’s awareness of space and posture, as well as on retinal processing. “When light strikes the 126 million photoreceptor cells in each retina,” she explains, “brain function is activated, governing not only eyesight but also to the regulation of many other physical functions, including posture and sleep.” Her incorporation of our senses beyond just vision takes the guessing out of eyeglass prescriptions. As Dr. Zelinsky says “the retina is composed of brain tissue and is part of the central nervous system, affecting processes like thinking, spatial awareness, movement, perception of the surrounding environment and selective attention to sound.”
I can attest to all of that!
Attention is the currency of our neurology. And I believe that vision is the most important factor in our brain’s endurance and focus.
In this episode, we talk about:
- 09:20 – Eye exams were standardized in 1862 and little has changed since
- 11:20 – Functions of vision that are not conscious
- 12:30 – 94% of vision is unconscious (Patrick Quaid, MCOptom, FCOVD, PhD)
- 14:00 – The sensory diet
- 16:00 – Eye/Vestibular & Ear/Vestibular
- 17:30 – The Z-Bell Test – Eye/Ear Coordination
- 19:30 – How the Z-Bell test was developed
- 20:30 – Neurotransmitters and light
- 23:00 – Cavin’s experience with vision, lenses, and the brain (and brain statistics)
- 25:30 – How lenses change the space around you
- 26:00 – Deborah’s story and mental blackboard
- 29:30 – Eye/Ear development vs reflexes and their disruption
- 32:00 – Reading vs. listening to learn
- 34:30 – Mind/Eye Institute Practitioner Training
- 35:00 – Eye Exam is ready for an update
- 35:30 – Vision for nervous system comfort
- 36:00 – Dr. Zelinsky’s Mentors
- 37:30 – Showing bedside changes in function to change medical practice
- 39:00 – Retina changes before the rest of brain – how we can diagnose brain conditions through vision tests
- 39:30 – Visual processing and quality of life
- 40:30 – Clark Elliot’s Facebook Group
- 44:00 – Synergistic Therapies
- 45:30 – WorldBrainMapping.org
- Dr. Z’s Links
- Cavin’s Links:
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Amazing realization of the idea that so much peripheral data is affected by the lenses, right down to co-ordination with ear sensory.. now i’m wondering what my lenses would be if the bell-test was used.. otoh, it strengthens my preference to ditch the lenses til i’m driving… oy
I had already read about [video too] an optometry practitioner who was using the equipment that looks into the eye, to determine the patient’s cardio status from the condition of the cardio portion of the eye. None of that within my reach, but i’m looking forward to progress of Dr Z’s education-for-optometrists agenda.
And lastly, it was intriguing to hear about Dr Z’s mental ‘blackboard’ that produces math answers!! Being a mathematician myself that idea would differentiate between those who do the math in their heads maybe vs my solid preference to lay it out on a spreadsheet and examine the components’ functions… of course i was never hit in the head by a croquet mallet!! like Dr Z, yikes… otoh, i was knocked unconscious by running in the house as a tike and colliding solidly with the edge of a door opening around the corner i was navigating at headlong speed.. i learned not to do that, ever again. My son however was one who did the math in his head, and we had a mutual respect for checking our work with the other’s pair of EYES.. oh my… hope you can understand everything this is supposed to be, as i am also one who loves to read — just never fiction [unless you include daily politics, rotfl..]
ttyl and thanks Cavin for so many ideas, as there’s so much in the podcast..!