Vision loss that cannot be corrected by ordinary glasses, contact lenses, medication or surgery is called low vision. There are many causes for low vision; eye disease like Macular Degeneration or Glaucoma, Diabetic Retinopathy, Retinitis Pigmentosa, Histoplasmosis / Toxoplasmosis, accident, stroke...or simply living a long time! And just as there are many causes, there are many results.
The type and severity of vision loss depend on the cause. For example, if visual acuity and central vision are affected as with Macular Degeneration, it becomes difficult to see details. This leads to problems with everyday activities like reading, writing, or recognizing faces. A good understandable explanation of Macular Degeneration is often difficult to obtain, however, most everyone has had a form of this disorder sometime in their lives, though most arenít aware theyíve ever had it! Remember when you had your picture taken with a flashbulb? Remember the white spots you saw in your eyes, at that instant you had Macular Degeneration? Those white spots were the Macula (the small central portion of the retina) those spots were white because the Macula had been washed out (degenerated) by the bright flash. In someone who has Macular Degeneration those spots arenít white, they are black/brown or there is just nothing there. What most of us donít know is the Macula is the portion of the eye that sees 20/20 or is our perfect vision, the part of our vision we use to read with, see faces and see detail.. Even though we are left with the peripheral vision (ALL the vision around the Macula), that portion of our vision does NOT see well, it ONLY sees 20/200 which is 10 times worse than perfect! This is the part of our eye that we see images with, we use this part of our vision to see images of people, avoid furniture and walk through doorways. This portion of our vision DOES NOT see detail. We CANNOT use the peripheral vision to see details of distant objects see road signs or read print with.Ē You may notice people with Macular Degeneration do not look directly at you in conversation, if they look directly at you their Macula (which is now probably a Black/Brown spot) is covering up your face. When they look to the side slightly, they can see you marginally better. People with severe Macular Degeneration are unable to see with enough detail to read their newspaper, recipes, mail, checkbook, magazines, contracts, greeting cards, books, photographs, phone book or any material with normal print. People with severe Macular Degeneration usually require the use of Electronic Magnifiers, like those offered by EYES FOR YOU. For more details on these products, please go to our products page. With Glaucoma, peripheral or side vision is affected which ordinarily results in bumping into furniture, missing stairs or curbs, and difficulty traveling. Retinitis Pigmentosa is the exact opposite of Macular Degeneration.
In addition, low vision may cause difficulty in detecting contrast. Objects and their backgrounds become indistinguishable. For example, while light-colored print on light-colored paper is difficult for anyone, for those with low vision it is nearly impossible.
You can take steps to maximize your remaining vision and stay independent. The first step is visiting a low vision specialist, a specially trained ophthalmologist or optometrist who will perform a thorough eye exam, evaluate your remaining vision and may even prescribe high-powered spectacles and magnifiers to enhance your vision.
The goal of the exam will be to educate you on how vision works, explain your particular condition and discuss ways in which you can minimize the effects of low vision on your life. Once this is accomplished, you will build an individual low-vision plan that addresses everyday living, career needs and hobbies. Vision aids prescribed may include a combination of hand-held magnifiers, video magnifiers and other daily living tools to help you minimize the impact of low vision on your enjoyment of everyday life. This is where N-FOCUS comes into play.
N-FOCUS, INC. has the experience in a wide variety of products to help nearly anyone with low vision or blindness. We do "In Home Demonstrations" to allow Low Vision individuals the opportunity to personally see if this type equipment would benefit them. There is NEVER any COST, OBLIGATION or PRESSURE for a demonstration. Click here to request a demonstration.
The products we handle include Desktop CCTV's (Video Magnifiers), Computer Compatible CCTV's, Portable CCTV's, Compact CCTV's, Talking Readers (ScannaR), Portable Talking Readers (KNFB Mobile Reader) and Talking Bar Code Readers (I.D. Mate).