Vision impairment or blindness may be caused by a variety of reasons. Blindness may be partial or total and can have symptoms like blurry vision, an inability to distinguish between different shapes and colours, poor vision at night, and tunnel vision as well. Being partially or completely vision impaired may be due to a head injury, glaucoma, retinal detachment, cataracts or even tumours.
HOW IS BLINDNESS DIAGNOSED?
An optometrist or a specialist from the ophthalmology department can correctly diagnose the condition with the help of a number of tests. The clarity of the patient’s vision as well as the strength of the eye muscles will be measured along with a stilt lamp test, even as the doctor checks how the pupils react to light and other stimuli.
HOW IS BLINDNESS TREATED?
Sudden vision loss can be treated through medication if diagnosed immediately and appropriate corrective measures are taken. Blindness due to cataract, glaucoma or trachoma and other causes can be corrected surgically. For those whose blindness cannot be cured, physical aids like white cane, GPS devices and techniques like echolocating may help improve their mobility. For reading, the Braille-based systems may be used. For those with partial blindness, magnification devices help in reading.
DID YOU KNOW?
There are many people with blindness, who, despite being significant visual handicaps, have had full lives, and enriched the lives of those who have had contact with them. Almost 80%-90% of the blindness in the world is preventable through a combination of education, access to good medical care, and provision of glasses.