Hollywood’s portrayal of blind people has come a long way from the old stereotypes of canes and dark glasses.
Especially with characters like Daredevil gaining popularity, it’s getting easier to find examples of fictional blind people being amazing. While blind people in real life don’t have crime-fighting superpowers, they do lead just as complex and interesting lives as sighted people. So, in the spirit of World Blindness Awareness Month, we’re going to discuss visual impairment.
What Is Visual Impairment?
A wide spectrum exists between better-than-20/20 vision and total blindness. Some people require no corrective lenses at all, but many need them to correct nearsightedness, farsightedness, or astigmatism. As soon as vision can no longer be fully corrected by glasses or contacts, it enters visual impairment territory. However, not all vision impairment is the same.
Low Vision Can Mean Many Things
Having low vision means having difficulty performing normal visual tasks, even with corrective lenses. One cause of low vision is macular degeneration, where the central vision is blurred but the peripheral vision is intact. Another is a narrowed field of vision, where the peripheral vision is limited but the central vision is normal.
Some other conditions that fall under the umbrella of visual impairment include:
- photophobia (the inability to look at light),
- diplopia (double vision),
- visual distortion or distortion of images,
- difficulties with visual perception
Even Total Blindness Is A Spectrum
Total blindness isn’t the same for everyone either. Some are born blind, while others lose their vision quickly or over an extended period of time. Some blind people have a slight ability to perceive light, while others see nothing at all.
To learn a bit more, watch the video below to hear Tommy Edison explain what he sees: