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June 1928

Subjective Conjunctivitis – Swinging – Long Swing, Variable Swing, Universal Swing, Circular Swing, Square Swing - Case Reports - Stories From The Clinic; 100. Myopia and Presbyopia Relieved by Treatment by Emily C. Lierman – Questions and Answers - Announcements


 
BETTER EYESIGHT

A MONTHLY MAGAZINE DEVOTED TO THE PREVENTION AND CURE OF IMPERFECT SIGHT WITHOUT GLASSES

JUNE, 1928

Subjective Conjunctivitis

By subjective conjunctivitis is meant that the conjunctiva is inflamed without the evidence of disease. Many people with subjective conjunctivitis will complain of a foreign body in the eye and yet careful search with the use of a good light and a strong magnifying glass will reveal no foreign body present. Some people with subjective conjunctivitis complain that they have granulated lids and that they suffer from time to time from the presence of little pimples on the inside of the eyelids and the pain that they suffer is out of proportion to the cause that they give to it. Among the many symptoms of subjective conjunctivitis may be a flow of tears from very slight irritants. However, the tear ducts, with the aid of which the tears are drained from the eye, are usually open in these cases and they are sufficiently open to receive a solution of boracic acid which may be injected through the tear duct into the nose. This shows that the tear duct is open normally, and therefore can drain the tears from the eyes.
Dr. C. R. Agnew, at one time professor of ophthalmology at Columbia University, gave many lectures on subjective conjunctivitis in 1885 and 1886. The treatment which he advocated was dry massage of the whole body and I can testify that it was an excellent remedy. However, the treatment which I found was the greatest benefit was the aqueous extract of the suprarenal capsule, or adrenalin, the properties of which I discovered, using one drop in each eye three times a day.
Many cases were benefited by the sun treatment, by central fixation and by the practice of the universal swing.

Modern prescription and non-prescription nose/sinus sprays contain toxic chemicals that travel from the nose into the eyes, ears, brain, body resulting in health impairment of body, brain, ears, eyes and unclear vision. Eye-drops are addictive and destroy the eyes natural tear structure and production.

Swinging

By W. H. Bates, M.D.

The muscles on the outside of the normal eye are at rest when the sight is normal. Any contraction of one or more of these muscles by pressure, by operation or by electrical stimulation always produces an error of refraction. The removal of the crystalline lens may be done without changing the form of the eyeball.
The normal eye has normal sight when it is at rest. It is at rest, or relaxed, when it is moving to prevent the stare, strain, or effort to see. When the patient becomes aware that his eye troubles are always caused by one of these three, all of which are difficult, he becomes able easily to maintain the swinging of all objects. (Oppositional Movement)
Shifting or moving the eyes from side to side with a similar movement of the head improves the sight when done properly. It can be done wrong when the eyes move in a different direction to the movement of the head. In some cases, when turning the head to the right, the eyes may turn in the opposite direction, for example, at the same time. Cases have been observed where one or both eyes appear stationary while the head may be moving.
One patient complained that when he planned to move his eyes with the movement of his head that he was not conscious that his eyes were moving as desired or that the eyes were moving and not stationary.
In some cases the eyes would move irregularly and unconsciously a longer or a shorter distance than the movements of the head. When one or more of the patient’s fingers were pressed lightly on the closed eyelids, the eyes could be felt to move rapidly, slowly, or in any direction.
The eyes may move to the right while the head moves opposite, or to the left. Swaying the head and body a long distance to the right or left may be accompanied by an apparent movement of stationary objects in the opposite or in the same direction. Stationary objects with a prominent background move opposite, while objects partly covered may appear to move in the same direction.
Some people have difficulty in practicing the swing successfully. They cannot imagine any stationary object to be moving no matter how much swinging is practiced. They usually complain that they cannot imagine stationary letters or other objects to be moving when they move their head or eyes. They feel absolutely certain that the stationary object is always stationary and cannot be expected to move when the body sways from side to side in a long or short movement.
It is absolutely necessary that all persons with imperfect sight should become able to imagine stationary objects to be moving. When an effort is made to imagine stationary objects to be stationary, the eyes become fixed or stare at the letter or other object and make an effort which always fails. A very successful method of teaching nervous people how to imagine stationary objects to be moving is as follows;

The Snellen test card
is fastened to a support about fifteen feet away from the patient. When the patient looks at a point about three feet to the right of the test card, the card is to the left of the point regarded, and advances farther to the left when the point regarded is moved to the right. When the patient is directed to regard a point to the left of the Snellen test card, the card moves to the right side of the point regarded.
The greater the shift from one point to another, the wider becomes the swing. By repetition, the patient becomes able to realize that whenever a point regarded is to the right of the card that the card and all other objects are to the left of the point regarded. When the eyes move to one side of the card, the card moves to the opposite side and this movement of the card can always be demonstrated by insisting that the patient imagine the Snellen test card moves to the left every time the eyes move to a point to the right. (The original sentence was; …insisting that the patient cannot imagine the Snellen test card moves…) The word cannot is thought to be a misprint and has been taken out.)
     This method is always a truth without any exceptions because no matter how much the patient may insist that he is right, he has to acknowledge that when he looks to the right, the Snellen test card moves to the left, and this movement is so decided that it very soon becomes impossible for the patient to fail to imagine stationary objects to be moving whenever the eyes move from right to left, from left to right, or in any other direction. This demonstration may be made very convincing with a little time and patience. There are so many of these patients who have difficulty in imagining stationary objects to be moving when the eyes move from side to side or in other directions that the swing should be practiced.

Long Swing:
The patient stands with the feet about one foot apart and turns the body to the right - at the same time lifting the heel of the left foot. The head and eyes move with the body, synchronized: eyes, head, body move together, same time, same direction. One should not pay any attention to the apparent movement of stationary objects. Do not look at the objects that are showing oppositional movement. Relax, swing and let the objects ‘swing’, pass by in the opposite direction. The left heel is then placed on the floor; the body is turned to the left as the patient raises the heel of the right foot. I usually advise patients to practice this right and left swing one hundred times morning and night, counting one to the right, two to the left, and so on.

Variable swing:
The patients holds the forefinger of one hand six inches from the right eye and about the same distance to the right, as he moves the head a short distance from side to side. The finger should appear to move in the opposite direction to the movement of the head. This can also be done with the finger held between the left and right eyes, at eye level.

Universal Swing
: The Patient stands and sways the body from side to side. While the body is moving, the eyes are moving, and stationary objects nearby (close objects) which have a background (distant object beyond close object) appear to move in the opposite direction to the movement of the head and eyes. Objects located at more distant points which have no background always appear to move in the same direction as the movement of the body.
If the finger is held before the eyes while the head is moved from side to side, one may, by practice, become able to imagine that everything connected with the finger, either directly or indirectly, is moving in the opposite direction, while the back ground is moving in the same direction. The universal swing is very beneficial and usually prevents and cures pain, dizziness, and other nervous symptoms.

Circular Swing:
There is one objection to the universal swing and that is that at the end of the count to the right or left, the patient in some cases stares. This stoppage of the swing may be corrected by the practice of the circular swing, when all objects are imagined to move continuously in a circular direction. The circular swing may be remembered with the eyes closed and differs from the other swings in that the finger, Snellen test card, or other objects appear to move in a circular direction.
In the circular swing, the head and eyes are moved in a circular direction.

Square Swing: In the square swing, the head and eyes are moved in a horizontal line from one side to the other and then downward, across, upward, and across, without a stop being made in any part of the swing. Many patients can practice a square swing when they find it difficult or impossible to practice a circular swing. Either the circular or square swing may be practiced with the eyes open or closed.

(The Figure Eight – Infinity Swing
is an improved, modern version of the circular and square swings.
See last page this book.) There are more examples of different swings throughout the magazines.
See index or use word search in the free Adobe PDF on the main website; http://cleareyesight-batesmethod.info/id10.html

Not all persons can practice any particular kind of a swing successfully with the eyes open, but with the eyes closed, with the help of the memory and the imagination, almost any swing can be practiced with benefit. It is interesting to observe that swinging the head and eyes a long distance from side to side is more easily accomplished than a short movement, although a short swing when practiced properly is more beneficial.
Practice the swings with the eyes open, closed, open and remember, imagine and see oppositional movement of objects.


Case Reports

Some years ago, a patient came to me suffering from progressive myopia with well marked imperfect sight. The patient was unable to practice central fixation, to remember, imagine, or see perfectly. The square swing, with the relaxation that it brought about, corrected all this patient’s troubles.

A patient who was born blind was treated several years ago. He had the symptoms of chronic glaucoma, partial atrophy of the optic nerve and progressive myopia. He was unable to imagine stationary objects to be moving when he moved his head and eyes from side to side or in other directions. He had great difficulty in consciously controlling the movements of his eyes. When he desired to look to the right both eyes would at once look to the left and the movement was very irregular.
    He was also troubled with nystagmus. Sometimes the nystagmus was very irregular, but usually both eyes moved jerkily from side to side. He was unable to hold either eye stationary. The eyes appeared very small because the margins of the upper and lower lids were close together; it seemed as though the lids were partially paralyzed.
When he was asked to move his eyes consciously, he soon became frightened and found it difficult and at times impossible to move his eyes at all.
    When pressing down his upper lid, while I was determining the hardness of the eyeball, I was surprised to notice that the pressure of the forefinger on the eyeball stopped the nystagmus and enabled him to move his eyes in various directions, which he had not been able to do before. (May help crossed/wandering eyes; lightly touching the top of the closed eyes on the eyelids and imagine shifting on objects and feel the eyes move correct.)
When the right eye looked twenty feet to the right of the Snellen test card, the card appeared to be to the left of where he was looking. When he looked as far to the left, the Snellen test card was about twenty feet to the right of where he was looking. By practicing the long swing alternately, he acquired, after a few weeks, a great deal of conscious control of the movement of the eyes. Later, after the movement of his eyes became more easy and continuous without effort or strain, the eyes seemed to become more widely open. By continued practice his other symptoms gradually disappeared.

A girl, aged ten years, came to my office with her father. He desired that I examine the child and find out if her sight was normal or not. I tested her sight and she read the bottom line at ten feet. When I asked her if the last letter on the bottom line could be a letter “O,” she answered that it could not be a letter “O,” because it was a figure “6.”
I said: “All right, is the figure ‘6’ stationary or does it move?” She breathed deeply, because it was a new experience for her to imagine stationary objects to be moving.
After a while she said: “Yes, the figure ‘6’ moves about its own diameter from side to side.” I said to her: “Can you stop the swing?” Almost before I asked the question, she looked away from the card. “Why did you do that?” I asked.
She replied: “When I tried to stop the swing, it gave me a headache; I lost the figure ‘6,’ the whole card was blurred and I didn’t like it.” Thus I demonstrated that normal sight cannot be maintained without a continuous, slow, short, easy swing of all stationary objects regarded. To stop the short swing requires a conscious or an unconscious effort, which in turn may produce discomfort and pain in the eyes or head.

One patient was suffering from chronic glaucoma, cataract, progressive myopia and chronic iritis. One eye was totally blind and was unable to locate a strong light in any part of the field. The other eye had vision from one side only, the temporal field. This patient received most benefit from the long swing; other methods of treatment seemed to be of no benefit.

One of the most difficult patients to relieve was a patient who had been injured in one eye, so that sympathetic ophthalmia appeared after some years. The vision in the right eye was perception of light only; the left eye had been enucleated, but the operation had not been performed sufficiently early to be of much benefit. The eyeball was soft, like mush, showing that the ciliary body had been very much diseased. This patient learned the universal swing at the first visit. With the help of this swing, the hardness of the eyeball increased and his vision became better. The benefit which he received from this particular swing was the only benefit that amounted to anything.


Myopia and Presbyopia Relieved
By Treatment

Floating Specks Relieved

By Emily C. Lierman

A woman, aged 51, whose vision had been impaired for a good many years, thought that she would try the Bates treatment and see if she could in time discard her undesirable glasses. When I tested her eyes, her vision was 15/70 with the right eye and 15/200 with the left. When I first meet a person I have an unconscious habit of looking at the eyes and I noticed particularly that this woman seldom blinked. She had worn glasses for twenty years, but recently she had worn them only at the theater, movies and in places where the light was dim.
She complained of floating specks which at times seemed to her like miniature airplanes or tiny round white circles with gray centers. She boasted about being able to multiply these imaginary things floating before her eyes and to see them just as clearly with her eyes closed as she could with them open. It is hard to even imagine how terribly she strained in order to bring about such a condition.
She told me that previous to her coming to me she had visited an eye specialist who examined her eyes thoroughly and who told her that he could see no condition of her eyes that would cause floating specks, and that the retinas of her eyes were perfectly clear. He diagnosed her case as progressive myopia and then gave her a stronger pair of glasses than she had been accustomed to wearing. It was because of these stronger lenses and the discomfort that she experienced in trying to get accustomed to the wearing of them that prompted her to come to me.
The black card with white letters was used in testing the sight of my patient. While she was resting her eyes by palming, I placed the test card ten feet from her eyes instead of fifteen, just to see how much more she could read at a nearer distance. After a short period of palming, I asked her to read the card again and her vision had improved to 10/50. I was glad to see this improvement even though it was slight. However, I thought that it might have been her right eye which was reading the 50 line, even though she was reading the card with both eyes.
I wanted to be sure that improvement had been made, so I asked her to cover her right eye and read the card again with the left. She read up to the 50 line just the same, which I thought was a good improvement in so short a time. I told her how other patients had improved by practicing many times a day at home and that if she would follow my directions, and come to see me for a few lessons that she would make steady progress.
A few days later she came again and I noticed that she had acquired the habit of blinking. This was encouraging, because it is not often that patients who have only had one treatment can remember to keep up this good habit (correct natural, relaxed vision habit) which is done unconsciously by people who have no trouble with their eyes. I did not mention this to the patient because I was afraid to make her conscious of the fact and again unconsciously get into her bad habit of staring. However, I made note of this in my record and the last time I saw her I drew her attention to it, which pleased her.
During her first treatment I did not make any special effort to relieve her trouble with the floating specks, nor did either one of us mention it. Before I tested her sight at her second treatment, she said she had something to tell me. She noticed for the first time that in trying to increase the number of floating specks which she formerly was able to do, she had produced a terrific pain in both eyes and so she stopped doing it.
At my patient’s second treatment I used the black test card and I gave her a card with diamond type to hold near her eyes. I gave her the usual advice, saying that she was not to try to read the print but only to look at the white spaces between the lines of fine type. Closing the eyes often and remembering the white spaces helped her to see the letters of the distant card, seeing one letter at a time and then looking to the white spaces of the fine type. She read 10/40 with each eye separately, seeing each letter clear and white. She remarked that the whiter the letters appeared to her, the more black became the background of the card.
At her first treatment I noticed that the sclera or white parts of both her eyes were bloodshot and looked as though she did not get enough sleep. I wrote this in my record of her case, but I said nothing about it to her. At this, her second visit, I noticed that the patient’s eyes looked clear and the white parts were as white as my own eyes.
I placed her before a mirror and told her to blink and to look at her right eye and then at her left. This helped her to see that her eyes were moving while she blinked. It was then that she remarked how white the white parts of her eyes were. I enjoy treating a patient like her because there is a great deal of satisfaction in having the patient know that there has been an improvement in so short a time. She told me that her husband had read to her for one whole hour while she was palming or just keeping her eyes closed and resting her arms on her lap or on the arms of her chair.
I gave her more advice about what she was to practice at home and then two days later I saw her again. This time I asked her to hold the fine print as close as she could read it and to read what she saw on the little card. During her first treatment, I did not ask her to read the fine print because I thought she would have no trouble in reading it. I was much surprised to hear her say that she could not read it.
I was out-of-town treating patients at this time and as I was away from Dr. Bates, I was not allowed by the medical authorities to use a retinoscope or an ophthalmoscope, or to do any examining of the eyes of any kind. I was perfectly willing to abide by the law and was told particularly by Dr. Bates himself to do so. Therefore, I could not determine just what was wrong and why, when she was myopic, she could not read fine type as most myopic patients can. However, that did not worry me in the least because all the articles comprising my book were reports of cases treated by me during more than nine years when I did not at any time use any apparatus in the treatment or in the cure of these cases. I did, however, use a sun glass.
This patient was sitting near a window with her back to the sun. I asked her to stand up while I turned the chair the opposite way and told her to keep her eyes closed as she sat in the sun, while I used the sun glass on her closed eyelids. I timed this treatment and gave her exactly eight minutes of the sun, focusing the sun glass on the closed eyelids, at the same time advising the patient not to open her eyes even for a second. Then I pulled down the shade to shut out the sunlight and immediately after opening her eyes she became able to read all of the fine print. And this with just that one treatment with the sunlight. After that she gave her eyes sun treatment many times a day and remained in the sunshine as much as possible, discarding her parasol which she usually carried with her and also leaving off her hat whenever it was possible.
All patients do not have the advantages which this patient had, I know. Yet patients are cured who have no chance to take sun treatment during the day except at their lunch hour. Patients who have found it impossible to get any sun treatment during the day have been successfully treated and cured of their imperfect sight by the use of a strong electric light.
While I was away from Dr. Bates, doing his work at the seashore and in other places, it was astounding to see so many people wearing dark glasses called “sun glasses” to protect their eyes from the glare of the sun. What a mistake it is to wear these glasses, even though so many specialists advise such a procedure! One cannot always wear them; therefore it is best for the human eye to get accustomed to all kinds of light without protection of any kind.
During the time I was treating this patient, while she was rapidly improving at each lesson, I had the great pleasure of meeting a noted criminologist who was very near-sighted. He had difficulty in seeing things clearly while driving his car and doing other necessary things which required good sight, unless he wore his strong glasses. This man mentioned the case of his brother, who had read Dr. Bates’ book, “Perfect Sight Without Glasses” and practiced the methods advised.
 

Sunning

He said that every day he practiced in the hot sun in the desert where all he could see was sand, distant mountains and the sky; he would close his eyes and allow the sun to shine on his closed eyelids, then open his eyes and look off at the distant mountains, alternately shifting from the saddle of his horse to the distant mountains. He was not only cured of his imperfect sight, but also became able to look at the sun by shifting and blinking without any tearing of the eyes or any discomfort whatever. He also noticed, being an expert in the different breeds of horses, that those which had blinders put on them acquired cataract, or could not see as well as horses who were free from any incumberance as far as their eyes were concerned. After reading Dr. Bates’ book he wrote to his brother and said that if the strong light of the sun was not injurious to an animal, why should it be injurious to the human eye? He was convinced that imperfect sight was caused by strain or an injury and if there were any sight at all that it could be improved by natural methods and not by the use of glasses.
To go back to my patient. She came for four days in succession for treatments, being encouraged at the progress she had made. At each treatment she improved, reading another line of the test card, by first reading the fine print as close as she could get it to her eyes. Shifting from a blank wall to the test card while she was standing and swaying her body slowly from side to side also helped in the improvement of her sight for the distance.
Switch Visual Attention at Close and Far Distances
Each day I varied the treatment. One day I placed her by a window and had her shift from the fine print up close to her eyes to the distant signs which I called to her attention, and to tops of houses and other buildings. An American flag waved in the distance and shifting from the flag to the flagstaff helped her to see the staff more clearly and by keeping up the constant sway of the body, blinking easily, but steadily all the while, she became able to see the harbor in the distance and also the boats which were moored near the shore. She told me that this was the first time in her life that she could ever see at such a distance.
She was the means of changing the mind of a skeptical husband who thought that the Bates treatment was a myth or something like it. However, he decided that if palming and swinging was a good thing for his wife and could make her so much more contented in her home duties than she was before, that perhaps it would help him to be a more agreeable person in his office as well as in his home. With just a few suggestions from me, my patient treated him successfully at home, and her last report was that he was reading his newspaper and book type without the use of his glasses.
I realized more and more that if Dr. Bates could live until the end of time that it would be his cured patients who would advertise him in the right and only way. Times without number there have been magazine and newspaper writers, as well as authors of books who were cured after being treated by Dr. Bates who offered to advertise him in the way that they thought best.
Many years ago, without realizing that it would harm him, Dr. Bates allowed these grateful patients to advertise him in their own way. They unintentionally caused him much worry and concern with the medical profession. The only way to make Dr. Bates’ work known to the world is to have his cured patients talk about the benefit they received and in that way help others who are suffering from defective vision. (Optical Industry Trying to Hide Bates Method From the Public.)
During the last treatment I gave my patient she read the various test cards, 15/15, with the exception of the black card with white letters, which she was able to read 15/10. Also, the floating specks had entirely disappeared after her third treatment. This case was very interesting, because it is seldom that one has presbyopia and myopia simultaneously.
To carry out treatment successfully, I try to be careful to vary the method of treatment at each lesson. I find it true also that if I try out things by myself, without the help of Dr. Bates, or his suggestions in the matter, that I fail sooner or later. Our students will benefit greatly by doing the same thing always. If the student is in doubt as to whether he or she can cure a difficult case, it is always best to write or come directly to headquarters and find out what is wrong. It is Dr. Bates’ desire always to help the students to cure any case which may be difficult.


Questions And Answers

Q - Can hemorrhage of the retina be cured by Dr. Bates’ method of treatment?
A - Cases of hemorrhage of the retina have been cured by Dr. Bates’ method.

Q- Can a patient while practicing the Bates method carry on his daily work just the same?
A - Yes, most patients continue their work just the same without the use of their glasses even though they find it difficult at the start.

Q - Can the vision be improved without glasses after the lens has been removed for cataract?
A - Yes.

Q - Does Dr. Bates approve of dark glasses to protect the eyes from the glare of the sun at the seashore?
A - No. Dark glasses are injurious to the eyes. The strong light of the sun is beneficial to the eyes, although it may be temporarily painful and blinding.

Q - What causes styes? (Sties)
A- Infection, which is always associated with eyestrain.

(When I was a young child I developed Myopia. I occasionally had painful, infected styes. One day a boy threw a hard snowball into my eye directly on the stye. PAIN and so sleepy, couldn't open eyes for 15 min. From that day on, after looking over my eyelids and thinking it appeared the stye developed out of a eyelash root, I then started to pull out any eyelash that would start to fell itchy, soar, red. This prevented styes for the rest of my life from age 8 to present 56.

Q- I am practicing the methods in Dr. Bates’ book to cure myopia and astigmatism. Sometimes, for short periods, I see perfectly: then things fade away. Can you explain this?
A- This is what we call getting flashes of perfect sight. With continued practice these flashes will come more frequently and eventually will become permanent. Then you are cured.
It is normal for the clarity of vision to fluctuate: clear, less clear, back to clear. Even persons with perfect sight experience times of less clear vision. When glasses are avoided, the vision returns to perfect clarity.

Q- If ones arms become tried while palming will a black silk handkerchief covering the eyes produce the same amount of relaxation one gets from palming?
A- No. Palming is the best method for relaxation and improvement in vision. When tired of palming, the hands can be removed and the eyes kept closed until one feels relaxed.

Q- My little daughter has temporary perfect sight while palming, but her eyes turn in when she plays excitedly or strenuously. I thought play was relaxing?
A – Play may be relaxing and should be beneficial, but like other things, it can be done wrong, necessitating great effort, and without benefit.

Q- I enjoy palming, but it makes me drowsy after ten or fifteen minutes. Is this helpful?
A – When palming is done properly it does not make you drowsy. It can be so relaxing that the person falls asleep if desired.

Q- I am presbyopic. How can I improve my vision?
A- By reading fine print and alternately remembering the whiteness of snow for a second while looking at the white spaces between the lines of print. Then close your eyes and remember or imagine the same white more continuously, better and more easily. By alternating, you may be become able to remember the white as well when flashing the card as you can with your eyes closed, and your vision will be improved.
    Then, look at, see, read the letters clear.

Announcements

Several back numbers of “Better eyesight,” from 1919 to 1925, ordinarily listing at 30 cents per copy have been reduced to ten cents per copy. These numbers contain articles on cataract, glaucoma, myopia, hypermetropia, astigmatism, presbyopia, (old age sight), ect.
Those who wish to have their magazines from July, 1927, to June, 1928, inclusive, bound may have this done by sending in their magazines by July 15th. Any missing numbers will be supplied at 30 cents per copy. The charge for binding is $1.00.