Empowering Daily Life: How Low Vision Aids Improve Everyday Tasks
Glasses don't address every vision need, especially for patients diagnosed with macular degeneration, diabetic retinopathy, glaucoma or a similar condition. Here is where low vision aids come in: These devices including handheld magnifiers, portable and desktop video magnifiers and other solutions support a patient's independence, assisting with several everyday tasks.
Today, low vision aids include manual and electronic options, which may be equipped with a variable field of view, multiple magnification levels and even text-to-speech functionality. Learn more about these devices and their benefits for older adults seeking to remain independent:
What Are Low Vision Aids?
Doctors tend to diagnose patients with low vision if they have a visual impairment that can't be corrected by surgery, wearing glasses or medication usage. Although low vision affects individuals of all ages, older adults have higher diagnostic rates.
What warrants a diagnosis of low vision? Related conditions include macular degeneration, glaucoma, diabetic retinopathy, retinitis pigmentosa or a similar progressive disorder, or the diagnosis may follow an eye injury.
Low vision aids ultimately assist individuals living with one of these conditions through various activities of daily living - from reading a book or magazine, following a recipe to cook, checking the time or even driving.
In general, low vision aids fall into the following groups:
- Magnifiers: Manual and video magnifiers make text and pictures look bigger for improved readability and viewing.
- Contrast solutions: Portable and desktop devices equipped with a camera increase text and picture contrasts for readability or viewing an object. Solutions may additionally cut down on glare for improved clarity.
- Large-size products: These include clocks with bigger numbers, playing cards and games with larger numbers or pieces, and large-print books.
The following fall within this scope:
- Handheld magnifiers
- Standing or table magnifiers
- Telescopes and telescopic glasses
- Reading glasses
- Glasses with enhanced side vision
- Digital and video magnifiers
- Closed captioning
- Anti-glare and absorptive lenses
Benefits of Low Vision Aids
For maintaining your independence as you grow older and live with a related condition, low vision aids offer the following benefits:
- Better utilizing your existing vision: Know how to work with what you have and understand when and where you need assistance. A portable or handheld magnifier, for example, comes in handy for reading a book, magazine, recipe or nutrition label or may aid your efforts with text-to-speech functionality during periods of eye strain.
- Complement your glasses: Even if you currently wear prescription glasses, you may experience select blind spots: For example, not being able to see clearly close up or at a longer distance. Low vision aids fill in the gaps as you go about your daily life, ultimately adding clarity to how you see and interact with the world.
- Addressing specific tasks: You know where you need assistance, or your doctor has mentioned where you might need additional help. Low vision aids are often task-specific, from reading and viewing pictures to following directions to using a computer screen to a more consistent field of view as you drive.
- Multiple formats: Where do you find you need assistance? Low vision aids are portable, including handheld manual and video magnifiers, or are supported by a table at home for better viewing an electronic screen. Desktop video magnifiers further let you adjust your field of view - including text size, magnification, focus and contrast levels.
Keep up your active lifestyle, get where you need to go and get the clarity you require with low vision aids. Explore all solutions now at Senior.com, or contact us to speak with a customer representative for more information.