"Restore My Vision, Today?" That's the name of a slick e-mail based advertisement floating around the Net supposedly authored by Dr. Samantha Pearson based upon a "controversial" regimen developed by a Dr. Sen. The emails send you to an even slicker web site asking for the "low price" of $37 for a booklet about eye exercises "guaranteed" to improve your eyesight. There, you are treated to a videomercial that touts the "proven way to perfect your vision". Is it a scam? Is it a rip-off? Does it work? You'll never find out, largely because of an increasingly pernicious Internet industry that offers fake product review sites. You'll also never be able to find out about the credentials of the very articulate Dr. Pearson — none apparently exist on the Internet, nor are they provided at her own alleged web site. So, should you spend the $37? We recommend not, for the following reasons:
1. There's a reason this sales pitch is slick — they spend a lot of marketing money to get it to you. Who is paying for that? You are.
2. If you look for a review of the product, you are deluged with lots of fake review or "scam" sites that simply direct you to the main sales site or offer some pablum talking about how the product is highly rated or recommended. (such as scamX.com and infoscamreviews.com) The marketers for this service paid to have these fake sites thwart any customer looking for real reviews.
3. The author is an unknown. If the website fails to feature the credentials of the author and/or if a Google search turns up nothing about this person, you can bet this is a marketer driven product. The fact that the alleged Dr. Pearson has a well-trained English announcers voice with almost perfect diction suggests that the so-called Dr. is not what she seems.
4. Perhaps most importantly, there is an abundance of free or low-cost vision exercise information on the Internet. Amazon offers a number of ebooks that cost nothing and provide the kinds of well-established eye exercises that can help vision. The titles include: "How to Improve Your Vision Naturally", "Vision for Life", "Eyesight and Vision Cure" and "Living Without Glasses". Even easier, you can just click this link and find four eye exercises described by a qualified optomistrist.
5. The testimonials offered in the video do not offer the full names or backgrounds of the individuals who are touting the product in very terse, well-crafted and well-lighted videos.
In fact, a New York-based optometrist has posted some very useful and time-proven exercises for close-up vision improvement which include:
LETTER READING—for better scanning accuracy and conscious eye control when reading or using a computer. Preparation: Type up a chart with four rows of random letters, just large enough that you can read them while holding the page at a typical reading distance (type size will vary depending on an individual’s vision). Leave space between each row. In row one, type all capitals, one space in between each letter…row two, all lowercase, one space in between each letter…row three, all lowercase, no spaces…row four, wordlike groups of random letters arranged as if in a sentence.
Exercise: Hold the chart with both hands. Looking at row one, read each letter aloud left to right, then right to left. Then read every second letter…then every third letter. If your mind wanders, start over. Over time: When you master row one, try the same techniques with row two…then row three…then row four. If you find that you have memorized parts of the chart, make a new one using different letters.
NEAR AND FAR—for improved focus and focusing speed when switching your gaze from close objects to distant objects (such as when checking gauges on a car as you drive). Preparation: Type a chart with six to eight rows of random capital letters, each letter about one-half inch tall (or as tall as necessary for you to read them from 10 feet away). Tack the chart to a wall and stand back 10 feet.
Exercise: Hold a pencil horizontally, with its embossed letters facing you, about six inches from your nose (or as close as possible without it looking blurry). Read any letter on the pencil, then read any letter on the chart. Keep doing this, switching back and forth as fast as you can without letting the letters blur. Over time: Do this with one eye covered, then the other.
PENCIL PUSHUPS—to promote eye teamwork. All you need is a pencil.
Exercise: Hold a pencil horizontally at eye level 12 inches from your face (or as far as necessary to see the pencil clearly). With both eyes, look at one particular letter on the pencil…keep looking while bringing the pencil closer to your face. If the letter blurs or doubles, it means that one eye is no longer accurately on target—so move the pencil back until the letter is clear once more…then try again to slowly bring the pencil closer while keeping the letter in focus.
THE "HOT DOG"—for improved flexibility of the muscles within the eye that allow the lens to change shape. No props are needed.
Exercise: With your hands at chest height about eight inches in front of you, point your index fingers and touch the tips together, so that your index fingers are horizontal. Gaze at any target in the distance and, without changing your focus, raise your fingers into your line of sight. Notice that a "mini hot dog" has appeared between the tips of your fingers. Still gazing at the distant object, pull your fingertips apart slightly—and observe that the hot dog is now floating in the air. Keep the hot dog there for two breaths…then look directly at your fingers for two breaths, noticing that the hot dog disappears. Look again at the distant object and find the hot dog once again. Continue switching your gaze back and forth every two breaths.
As your close-up vision improves, you may find that you need less-powerful reading glasses—or none at all—for your day-to-day activities.
We recommend that you check out these low-cost or free books or web-based exercises before forking over $37 to the faux doctor. And beware ANY Net-based sales pitch that has uncredentialed, slick video presentations with no independent reviews. It may not be a scam, but it is probably a rip-off because it is overpriced for what it is offering. In this case, there's lots of good vision exercises in the marketplace offered at a fraction of the cost of "Restore My Vision". Save your hard-earned money.