A Path of Actions and Information to Help when Vision Cannot be Corrected by Glasses and Becomes A Low Vision Experience on Such A Site

This page has links to websites, videos, and documents I have written to help people who either just learned they have a visual impairment, or, have not gone through the full range of what could have occurred to benefit the rehabilitation process.

The topics to be covered include:

  1. The first steps to take.
  2. The Differences between an Optometrist, Ophthalmologist, and Optician.
  3. Finding a Low Vision Provider for a low vision  examination/evaluation.
  4. What to expect and Preparing for the Low Vision examination/evaluation.
  5. An introduction to some of the terminology used in Low Vision.
  6. A list and description of eye conditions which might cause low vision.
  7. Simulations of the Most Common Eye Conditions Causing Low Vision.
  8. An overview of the full low vision experience.
  9. Becoming more connected with a few core resources.
  10. How to find local, regional, and national organizations for information, support, or services.
  11. How to travel safely without fear of tripping over something, falling down steps, or off a curb, using the services of an Orientation and Mobility Instructor.
  12. Using Assistive Technology for low end needs such as telling time, through the high-end needs of using computers.
  13. Smart phones and their accessibility.
  14. How to do the tasks of daily living, such as money management, food preparation, 14. personal care, sewing, and matching clothes, by using Rehabilitation Teaching services.
  15. The issue of Coping with the normal emotional stresses of having a sight loss.
  16. The method sighted family, friends, or others should use to guide a person with low vision in strange settings.

 

 

When a person is told they have a problem with their eyes which cannot be corrected by conventional glasses, they are often classified as having low vision, are visually impaired, legally blind, partially sighted or may even be functionally blind.

 

The first steps when told of that by a medical professional who is not an Eye Doctor, should be a request for a referral to a specialist who is trained to be an eye Doctor. If the full health of an eye has already been determined and requires no additional medical treatments, the next goal would be to find a provider who has a specialty in low Vision. That can be an Optometrist with a specialty in Low Vision or an Ophthalmologist who too has a specialty in Low Vision. The purpose is to have a full low vision examination, which may also be referred to as a low vision evaluation or assessment. If the person who made the diagnosis does not know of local providers of this service, there are places which can be contacted for names of local providers who are professionally trained in Low Vision.  A Low Vision examination is not something which is done by all Eye Doctors. The medical professional that is best suited for these services have been trained and usually have done a residency in the field of low vision. More often than not, they are Low Vision Optometrists, but there are certainly many Ophthalmologists who have been trained in the unique issues of Low Vision.

 

If you want to know the differences in Optometrists, verses Ophthalmologist, verses Opticians, click or enter on this link to read the explanation which was copied from the WebMD Website.

 

To find the name and contact information of a professional who can do low vision examinations/evaluations, click or enter on this link to go to the Finding a Provider page of my site. On that page, there will be an explanation of various ways and links to sites which will locate a qualified professional in a relevant geographic location.

 

In preparation for the first visit to the low vision service provider, it would be beneficial to click or enter on the links below. They are several videos which explain the difference in a low vision examination/evaluation verses the standard generic eye examination. The reason for the multiple videos on the same topic, is to give a full range of what people say happens in the visit, as well as how to prepare for the visit to get the most benefits. Here are the videos to check out before the day of the visit to the low vision service provider:

What Is Different About a Low Vision Examination?

Do It Yourself Series: Visiting a Low Vision Center or   Doctor’s Office.

Doctor Randy Kincade Talks About Being a Specialist in Low Vision Optometry and What His Patients Express and Go Through from Start to end.

 

This is a good place to learn what is meant by the term low vision, legally blind, the numbers 20/20, and a few other basics which seem to get left out of many paths of vision rehabilitation. Here are some websites and videos to fill in some of the blanks that many not have been covered sufficiently up to this point:

 

           Low Vision and Legal Blindness Terms Explained by the American Foundation for the Blind

What Is 20/20 Vision Anyway?

  The Mathematics of the Snellen Eye chart: the chart with the large letter E on top which is used in the eye doctor’s office to test what can be seen.

 Measuring the Lens Power in your glasses: Diopter Explained

 What Is Involved in Having a Visual Fields Test and Why Have One Done?

Defining Legally Blind.

 Peripheral Vision, how it is Different from Central Vision, Put it to the Test by Scientific America

 

At this point, it would be a good idea to explore a little about the eye problem that is causing the development of low vision. Below is a link to a page I have put together of videos and websites which explain many of the conditions which cause low vision. When done, come back to this page to learn the next phase of gaining more control of the low vision now being experienced.  See if the condition given by the medical provider is on the list that will be found when the next item is clicked or entered on:

 Eye Diseases and Conditions which Might Cause Low Vision or Blindness

 

Simulations of various eye conditions which are experienced by people with low vision can be explored by clicking or entering on this link. Be sure to come back to this page when done to learn the other parts of the low vision experience.

Simulations of the More Common Eye Conditions which result in Low Vision have been created. Click or enter on this link to go to a page of videos which give a basic simulation of what is seen when someone has one of the conditions.

 

The next series of videos gives a total overview of the low vision experience right up to how family and friends can assist when a person develops low vision. There are five videos which I have found to provide that broad overview:

Low Vision Part One: What Is Low Vision?

Low Vision Part Two, What Can I do if I have Low Vision?

Low Vision Part Three: How Can People with Low Vision Maintain Their Independence?

Low Vision Part Four: How Can People with Low Vision Keep a Positive Attitude?

Low Vision Part Five: How Can Family Members Help A Loved Member Who Has Low Vision?

 

It is time to get connected with supportive and informational resources. The types and things they offer are vast. See the below links to explore all the places available for people who have low vision and see how developing low vision is not as isolating as it most likely feels.

 

One grass roots organization is the        Council of Citizens with Low Vision International. This group’s purpose is:

·        To establish the right of persons with low vision to make full use of their vision through all available aids, services and technology.  

·        To provide a mechanism through which low vision people can express their individual needs, interests and preferences.  

·        To educate the general public, professionals, and low vision people themselves as to the potentialities, capabilities, and needs of low vision people.  

·        To establish outreach programs to ensure that all individuals with low vision have access to necessary services.  

·        To promote research to prevent blindness, improve maximum utilization of sight, and improve environmental conditions and access for low vision people.  

·        To support the development of and expansion of pre-service and in-service training programs to improve the quality and quantity of med

To contact this group the phone number and website address are:

Their number is:

Phone: (844) - 460 - 0625 
info@cclvi.org

Website: http://www.cclvi.org

 

Here Is a way to Find Low Vision Resources and organizations listed for each state, for those in the USA, just click or enter on this link to find the full list. But, return to this page to Continue With the Path to coping with the Full Low Vision Experience.

 

There is a resource which has a massive range of activities they do to advance the lives of people who are either visually impaired, which includes those with low vision, and those who are blind. It is the American Foundation for the Blind and They do this through:

 

There is a video on You Tube which reviews what AFB is all about and here is the link to that video:

 

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCVbUKr2rmB19_Vch6PgK-Fg

 

         

 If there is a way to explore their website, it will be well worth the time and effort.

 

The website address is: http://www.afb.org

Their phone number is: 212-502-7600

 

To find a complete list of other resources across the USA, please click or enter on the next item. It is a large list, as there are many resources out there which are on this list below:

 

Click or enter on this link for the full list of the National Resources Providing Services, information, Referrals, Support, or other Assistance for People Who Have or are Interested in Low Vision, a Visual Impairment, are Functionally or Totally Blind

 

What else is involved when someone has  developed low vision?  There are many things still to work out in becoming as independent as possible with a vision reduction. There is the issue of traveling safely and not tripping over things, down stairs, or off curbs. To cope with that area of life, there is something called Orientation and Mobility. See the below videos to gain a better understanding of that part of the low vision rehabilitation process after developing low vision:

Orientation and Mobility, What to Expect and Do

Visually Impaired, what is Orientation and Mobility?

Orientation and Mobility, Room Familiarization Techniques.

Orientation and Mobility, Upper and Lower Body Protection.

Orientation and Mobility, Road Crossings.

Orientation and Mobility, Navigating Escalators.

How Do People Who Are Blind Travel Independently?

White Cane Song, Upbeat View of Using a White Cane.

Are You Blind Enough to Use A White Cane?

Do the Positives Outweigh the Negatives in Using a White Cane?

The Cane Explained.

How to Use the White Cane in The Winter, A Tutorial?

Being Legally Blind and Using a White Cane.

 

Along with the areas covered so far, Assistive Technology can play a big role in all parts of life with low vision. That field ranges from the high end of using computers, through using one of the various smart phones, and right through low end types of technology such as talking watches and even talking microwave ovens. The next series of links will provide a better understanding of Assistive Technology and how it fits into the lives of people who have a visual impairment.

 

 Using Technology When Visually Impaired or Blind by the American Foundation for the Blind.

 

Assistive Technology for the Blind and Visually Impaired, click or enter on this link to review the You Tube video.

 

Assistive Technology for People Who are Visually Impaired or Blind, Part One. Click or enter on this link to hear a woman who describes the Low-End Assistive Technology used by her for independence.

 

Assistive Technology for People who are Visually Impaired or Blind, Part Two. Click or enter on this link to listen to the woman in Part One discuss the high-end Assistive Technology for using her cell phone, using a computer and more.

An insight into assistive technology for the visually impaired and blind people: state-of-the-art and future trends | SpringerLink

 

While there is so much more to the things which can be done by use of Assistive Technology, those videos only gave the basics for the consideration of its use in various parts of the life of someone who has low vision.

 

I do want to encourage you to check out the pages on my site about iPhones, Voice Over which is the phone’s way to talk to the user in an understandable way, and the page on Siri as that can be a personal assistant for so many tasks. Some of those tasks are:  making and reminding you of appointments, finding information, emailing, knowing your location and finding an address, setting the timer and alarms, making quick notes, and calling people without having to memorize numbers.

 

If you click or enter on this link you will be able to review a video titled, “How do People Who Are Blind Use Smart Phones.” While this video is presented by a man with no vision, it still applies to anyone with a sight loss.

 

While this page is far from done, at this point ,  I would like to let you know there are other general information pages which should be checked out on the Such A Site   website. They have information on ways to handle the stress which often comes with having low vision. Those pages are called Mindfulness and Guided Meditation, and Acupressure to relieve pain and stress. See the full list of pages at the very end of this page. They start with the words Jump To and then give the name of the associated page.

 

 

 Is there more to learn beyond what has been covered so far? Of course, think of all the things that make up living independently and more in control of the activities in daily living. Things which  might not be assisted by use of Assistive technology. There are people who specialize in teaching ways to do all those tasks but with low or even no vision. They are called Rehabilitation Teachers and below is a link to their home page. On that website, there is a full and thorough explanation of what they do, how, and also about their profession in general. After reviewing that website, be sure to come back to this page to review a large number of videos which explain many of the ways to do the activities of daily living such as ways to keep money so a twenty-dollar bill is not given instead of a one-dollar bill. Ways to tell coins apart by the sense of touch. Ways to prepare food including slicing vegetables  and not fingers, cooking on stoves safely, sewing with low or no vision, keeping clothes in a way to match outfits and not be miss matched, how to shave off facial hair and not have one hundred nicks afterwards, and even how to put on facial makeup without ending up looking like a clown. But, first, check out the website of Rehabilitation Teachers:

preparing food, about their work, which is then followed by many videos on how to do various tasks with low or no vision:

 

Rehabilitation Teachers Home Page with an explanation of what they do, where, why, and their professional objectives can be found by clicking or entering on this link.

 

 The following are videos describing ways to do all types of activities of daily living such as: money management, food preparation, cooking, shaving, putting on makeup, and even cleaning:

 

Money Identification: How to Handle and Tell Apart your Money

Money and Coin Identification USA: How to Tell the Difference in Your United States Coins.

Money and Coin Identification Canadian: How to Tell the Difference in Your Canadian Coins,

Lighting Tips for People with Low Vision.

Signature Writing: Writing Your Signature When You Have Low Vision.

Prescription Identification: Ways to manage prescriptions when someone has a visual impairment by Hadley Institute. Kitchen Organization: How to organize the kitchen for easy access when you have Low or No Vision by Hadley Institute.

Cooking Devices: How to use every day cooking devices by Hadley Institute.

 

Appliance Controls: Using Bump Dots in the Kitchen to Help Figure Out Different Settings on Appliances.

Stove Use and Safety: How to use the stove in a safe way by Hadley Institute.

Food Identification: How to mark food for future identification by Hadley Institute.

Food Preparation: How to Slice and cut things safely when someone has low or no vision by Hadley Institute.

 Measuring Spices and Pouring Things: How to measure spices and Pour Liquids by Hadley Institute.

Stove and Microwave Controls: How to mark the stove and microwave for easy and accurate access by someone with a visual impairment by Hadley Institute.

 Cooking by Frying or Baking: Ways to fry or bake food when you are visually impaired by Hadley Institute.

Food and Meals: Meal Tips for People Who have Low Vision or are Blind by CNIB

Clothing: How to manage clothing by Hadley Institute.

Laundry: Tips on How to Do Laundry with A Visual Impairment

Laundry and Ironing: Tips for Ironing for the Visually Impaired.

Bathroom Organization: Low Vision Quick Tips, Organizing the Bathroom by Hadley Institute

Cleaning: Five tips to be able to clean when you have a visual impairment.

Cleaning: A few ways to keep a clean house when you have low or no vision.

Sewing and Special Tools: A video about fixing a hole in a comforter by a person with a visual impairment using special needles and such.

Sewing and Cutting Materials: Website of NFB which contains the story of a woman who did all parts of sewing, from cutting material to using a needle with thread.

Makeup Techniques: Ways for Putting on Facial Make up for Women Who are Visually Impaired or Blind

Shaving Facial Hair: Techniques for Men Who Are Visually Impaired or Blind to shave facial hair safely and efficiently.

General Activities of Daily Living: Techniques of Daily Living when Someone is Visually Impaired or Blind.

 

 

The next area is to be expected, the dealing with feelings after the loss of some or all of a person’s sight. Below are links which address that area:

Coping with The Emotions of a Vision Loss.

Dealing with Your Feelings After A Sight Loss.

Webinar on Coping with a Vision Loss and Your Feelings.

Coping with A Vision Loss and Having A Support System.

Dealing with Vision Loss and Anxiety and Your General Mental Health.

 

Let us not forget about how others can assist when in new, strange, changing, or any environment which might have  more unpredictable hazards or would be more time consuming to navigate with a cane or guide dog. Those people who want to help should view the below videos to learn the formal way to do Sighted Guide. If this is unknown to you, check out the videos yourself:

Sighted Guide Procedures to Assist Someone Who Is Visually Impaired or Blind. Part One.

Sighted Guide Procedures to Assist Someone Who Is Visually Impaired or Blind, Part Two.

An additional link which might be helpful is regarding a claim for disability and what will help get those benefits. Click or enter on the link below for jus that type of information.

How to Win Your Vision Disability Claim?

To learn of even more information, resources, and research being done, check out the page on my site titled Low Vision and Blindness. There is a direct link to that part of my website at the bottom of this page and starts with the words Jump To.

 

Go to Acupressure Page on such A site 

 Go to American's with Disabilities Act and the rehab Act of 1973

Go To Android Accessibility Page on Such A Site

Go to Apps I, Glenda Such, Recommend on Such A Site.

Go to Audio Description Page on Such A Site.

Go to Brain and Body Page on Such A Site.

Go to Did You Know Why Something Was Named Something on Such A Site

Go to The Ear on Such A Site..

Go to Emojis Page on Such A site.

Go to Employment Page of Such A Site.

Go To Exercises Made Accessible Page on Such A Site

Go to Face book Keystrokes on Such A Site.

Go to Financial Assistance for Those with a Visual Impairment on Such A Site.

Go to Funny and Interesting Responses From Siri on Such A Site

Go to International Resources Page on Such A Site.

Go to iPhone and iPad on Such A Site.

Go to JAWS on Such A Site.

Go to Keyboards for the iPhone on such A Site.

Go to Low Vision and Blindness Resources and Info on Such A Site.

Go to Mindfulness Guided Meditation on Such A Site.

Go To Nature Sounds Page on Such A Site

Go to NVDA Screen Reader on Such A Site.

Go to Path to Take When Glasses Won't Help Page on Such A Site

Go to Siri Capabilities and Fun Questions on Such A Site.

Go to Sleep Apnea Page on Such A Site

Go to Stargardt's Eye Disease on Such A Site..

 

Go to Trivia Information on Such A Site..

Go to The Eye on Such A Site.

Go to Vendors who sell products for the Visually Impaired or Blind on Such A site.

 

Go to Voice Over for the iPhone and iPad on Such A Site.

 

   

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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