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Low Vision

Low Vision is a word to describe visual impairment not correctable by standard glasses. There are many types of visual impairment, and many strategies and devices for living with visual impairment.

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Living with visual impairment can be

Types of Visual Impairment

Mild Visual Impairment
People with mild visual impairments are not disabled and can still function in every way- They can read, they can work... They can even drive if they have paperwork filled out by their optometrist for the DMV! Ask us if you need the appropriate paperwork to show the DMV proving that your vision is good enough to drive.

Moderate Visual Impairment
People with moderate visual impairments can usually still drive a car with additional paperwork from the DMV. They can cook their own food and even read, but will need Low Vision Devices to help with every day living activities.

Severe Visual Impairment
People with severe visual impairment typically cannot read without extremely large print such as a large computer screen or CCTV. Those with a severe visual impairment will not be allowed to drive by the DMV. Daily activities may be limited, but with the help of a Low Vision Optometrist and Occupational Therapist, patients can still utilize their vision for mobility and to enjoy their lives.

Legally Blind
There is often confusion about what legally blind means. A legally blind person sees 20/200 or worse, so at least 10 times worse than a normally sighted individual. Although this prevents them from reading or driving, the legally blind can do almost all of the same activities as the fully sighted can. Being legally blind qualifies you for disability. Although it is important to utilize all strategies for living with legal blindness that are presented to you by your Low Vision Optometrist and the Department of Rehabilitation, there is also hope for improvement in vision in the future for those whom are legally blind, such as the Argus II Retinal Prosthesis System.

Completely Blind
Seeing an optometrist or ophthalmologist can still be beneficial even if you or your loved on are completely blind. Our goal is to keep your orbit and eyes comfortable and free of disease. Specialty offices also provide prosthetic eyes for those who need them.

Lysle Shaw-McMinn, O.D.

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Written for Our Blog on May 26, 2016


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