Low vision is that the loss of sight that’s not correctible with prescription eyeglasses, contact lenses, or surgery. This type of vision loss doesn’t include complete blindness because there’s still some sight, and it can sometimes be improved with the utilization of visual aids.
It includes different degrees of sight loss, from blind spots, poor night-sight, and problems with a glare to an almost complete loss of sight. The American Optometric Association describes low vision as two types –
- “Partially sighted”: the person has acuity between 20/70 and 20/200 with conventional prescription lenses.
- “Legally blind“: the person has acuity no better than 20/200 with conventional correction and a restricted field of vision but 20 degrees wide.
Anyone is often suffering from low vision because it results from a spread of conditions and injuries. Because of age-related disorders like degeneration and glaucoma, low vision is shared in adults over age 45 and is even more common in adults over age 75.
The most common types of low vision include:
- Loss of central vision: there’s a blind spot within the center of one’s vision.
- Loss of peripheral (side) vision: the lack to ascertain anything to either side, above, or below eye level. Central vision, however, remains intact.
- Night blindness: The inability to see in poorly lit areas such as theatres and outside at night.
- Blurred vision: Objects both near and much appear out of focus.
- Hazy vision: the whole field of vision appears to be covered with a movie or glare.
There could also be one or more causes of this vision. These are usually the results of disorders or injuries affecting the attention or a disorder like diabetes that affects the whole body. Some of the most common causes of low vision include age-related macular degeneration, diabetes, and glaucoma.
It can also result from cancer of attention, albinism, brain injury, or inherited disorders of the attention, including retinitis pigmentosa. If you’ve got these disorders or are in danger for them, you’re also at higher risk for low vision.
Many eye diseases can cause low vision. These can include:
- Macular degeneration
- Diabetic retinopathy
- Retinitis pigmentosa
- Eye injuries
The impact of low vision
Eye diseases are more common in older people. However, healthy aging of the attention doesn’t cause low vision. Because seeing involves both the eye and thus the brain, diseases that affect the brain, like strokes, also can cause low vision. This vision during a toddler are often caused by a variety of the same conditions as in adults.
The other possible causes of low childhood vision are as follows –
Congenital Diseases (Present at Birth)
- Optic nerve hypoplasia (small optic nerves)
Inherited Diseases (Runs during a Family)
- Retinitis pigmentosa
- Optic atrophy
Acquired Diseases (Develop After Birth)
- Eye injury
Retinopathy of prematurity (eye disease of premature infants)
- Cerebral/cortical visual defect (from brain damage)
Vision loss features a significant impact on the lives of these who experience it also as on their families, their friends, and society. The health consequences related to vision loss extend well beyond the attention and sensory system.
Vision loss can affect one’s quality of life (QOL), independence, and mobility. It has been linked to falls, injury, and worsened status in domains spanning the psychological state, cognition, social function, employment, and educational attainment.
Although confounding factors likely contribute to a number of the harms that are related to vision impairment, testimony from visually impaired persons speaks to the many role that vision plays in health, vocation, and social well-being.
What to do about low vision
Some sight disorders, like diabetic retinopathy, are often treated to revive or maintain vision. When this is often impossible, low vision is permanent. However, many of us with this vision find visual aids helpful.
Popular low vision aids include:
- Telescopic glasses
- Lenses that filter light
- Magnifying glasses
- Hand magnifiers
- Closed-circuit television
- Reading prisms
Some patients with retinitis pigmentosa who have no useful vision may be eligible for the Argus® II retinal prosthesis.
Non-optical aids designed for people with low vision also are beneficial.
Some popular non-optical devices include:
- Text reading software
- Check guides
- High contrast clocks and watches
- Talking watches and clocks
- Large print publications
- Clocks, phones, and watches with enlarged numbers
Visual aids improve both sights and, therefore, the quality of life for several people. Talk to your doctor about where to get visual aids.
Low vision could also be preventable for patients with diabetes, and a few patients with degeneration and glaucoma could also be treated to stop further vision loss.
Low vision isn’t a traditional symptom of aging. If you’ve got noticed changes in your vision, see your ophthalmologist directly. It is essential to treat any treatable condition.
Your ophthalmologist will do an entire eye exam to diagnose what’s affecting your vision. For children, there’ll even be questions on the child’s birth, medical record, and any past vision problems.
The exam usually begins with questions on your medical record and any vision problems you would possibly be experiencing. You will have tests designed to see your vision and check for eye diseases.
Your doctor may use a spread of instruments and aim bright lights at your eyes. Your eyes also will be tested for visual acuity, or how well you see letters at a distance. If you’re having trouble doing things aside from just reading small print, your ophthalmologist may refer you for vision rehabilitation. If a family member or friend has vision loss, he or she needs to learn to do as much as possible independently and safely.
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