If you are one of the millions of Americans living with low vision, you have a story to tell. Your world has changed as your sight had changed. You are forced to change the way you do things, adapting your activities of daily living to accommodate for your vision changes. Low vision devices are instruments that you can use to help navigate this new world. But, which low vision device is right for you?
As with so many questions today, the answer is: it depends. It depends on your needs, wants, activity level, and allotted budget. One answer is certain, however, it all starts with your eye care provider. If your eye care provider is not a low vision specialist, ask them to recommend one. Alternately you can look at our doctor locator here to find one in your area.
When you go to see the low vision specialist it is important to TELL YOUR STORY. This includes sharing:
- Medical history—optical health is related to overall health
- Previous eye injuries
- Current level of activity
- What you want to do that you are having trouble doing because of diminished vision
The first three items are easy to explain. The fourth may require a bit of a reality check. Your vision is no longer perfect, and even with the best low vision devices on the market, you will not be able to see 20/20. But there are devices that can accommodate your specific wants and needs if you tell your specialist your story. For instance, if you love knitting, but stopped when your vision began to blur, there are low vision devices for that. If your passion is watching movies, there are devices for that as well. And if you want to be able to ride a bike or drive, there are even devices for this, depending on your visual capabilities and the laws in your state. There is a good chance that you will have to choose a few activities—you can’t have it all!
Once your low vision specialist knows your story—who you are, where you came from, and where you want to go—he or she will be able to help you select a low vision device that is right for you, and offer the proper training so you can use the device to optimize your remaining sight to accomplish your desired tasks.
To find out more about some low vision devices available, you can look on our website, here. This link shows some options that assist people who want to accomplish near tasks, intermediate-distance tasks, and long-distance tasks.