Very few people are completely without sight. Many people who are classified as blind have some sight remaining, albeit not very much. Low vision is characterized by vision that is no better than 20/200 with correction. If you have 20 degrees or less of visual field remaining, this would also be characterized as low vision. The staff at our optometry office: Urban Optics in College Station, TX, can diagnose and treat low vision.
What Causes Low Vision?
There are a number of eye diseases and conditions that can result in low vision. These include:
- Macular degeneration: A condition that affects the macula, which is the area of the retina responsible for sharp central vision. This condition progresses relatively slowly, and in the advanced stages, a large blind spot in your central vision can occur.
- Retinitis pigmentosa: This condition causes a gradual decrease in your night vision. It can also severely impair your side vision. In time, it can result in complete vision impairment.
- Glaucoma: Glaucoma causes damage to the optic nerve due to increased eye pressure. This condition can cause a loss of peripheral vision and night vision. Over time, it can cause tunnel vision.
- Retinal detachment: A retinal detachment occurs when the retina separates from its underlying layer. It is caused by eye trauma, serious infections, blood vessel disturbance, and tumors. A detached retina can surgically be repaired. In some cases, the vision can be restored. In others, low vision is possible.
- Diabetes: Vision loss is one of the complications associated with diabetes.
How Is Low Vision Diagnosed?
Low vision can be diagnosed during the visual acuity portion of your eye exam. If low vision is suspected, your optometrist will perform testing using special lighting, magnifiers, and specialized charts. These will allow your eye doctor to test your visual acuity, visual field, and depth perception.
If your poor vision is making daily tasks difficult or impossible and it is affecting your quality of life, a low vision test is essential.
How is Low Vision Treated?
Once vision loss has occurred, it cannot be restored. However, there are low vision aids available that can help you see better so and live a normal life. Treatment options include:
- Telescopic lenses
- Lenses that filter light
- Magnifying glasses
- Hand magnifiers
- Reading prisms
- Text reading software for your Smartphone or computer
- Closed-circuit television
- Talking clocks and watches
- Large print publications
- Phones, clocks, and remote controls with enlarged numbers
- Implantable telescope (this is often recommended for patients with end-stage macular degeneration)
Schedule an Appointment Today!
If you are suffering from low vision and it is affecting your daily life, Urban Optics in College Station can help. We provide all eye care services including low vision care. Our doctors of optometry can recommend a variety of visual aids to help you see better and improve your quality of life. You can call us at 979-690-0888 to schedule an appointment today!