Low Vision and Blindness

By: Ikea Bolawa

Definitions

Low vision is a condition that cannot be corrected or improved with glasses. It causes visual acuity to be 20/70 or poorer in the better seeing eye.
Blindness is when a person has a visual acuity of 20/200 or worse in the better eye with corrective lenses.

Conditions

Glaucoma : The intact vision remains in the center while progressively the peripheries start decreasing

Macular Degeneration: is caused by deterioration of the retina. It is the lost of vision in the center portion of eye.

Cataract: causes cloudiness throughout the whole vision of the eye

Diabetic Retinopathy: Diabetes leads to damage of the smaller arteries and blood vessels at the back of the eyes over the retina.

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Accomadations in Classroom

  • Screen Enlargements: Use oversize monitors and screen enlargement softwares

  • Readers and Scanners: Speech output versions of MAGic and ZoomText. Kurweil can scan text and provide speech outputs.

  • Braille Hardware: Braille can be read by using hand. Software can convert electronic text to Braille.

Low Vision Classroom Accommodations
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Parts of an Eye

  1. Cornea:

    transparent bulge in the front of the eye, curved, begins refraction

  2. Pupil: space or black hole through which the light passes; can be elliptical in nature;
  3. Lens: transparent and elastic, continues refraction and focusing onto the retina;
  4. Retina: third part of the eye wall; contains rods and cones; photo receptor cells; light rays are focused on it;
  5. Optic Nerve: carries the nerve impulse to the thalamus and then to the optical lobe of the cerebrum, where vision is locate
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Fun Facts

  • About 1.3 million people in the U.S. are legally blind.
  • Each year 75,000 more people in the United States will become blind or visually impaired.
  • It is estimated that as many as 10 million Americans are blind or visually impaired.
  • There are 5.5 million seniors in the United States who are either blind or visually impaired.
  • Studies show that over the next 30 years aging baby boomers will double the current number of blind or visually impaired Americans.
  • A Gallup poll shows that blindness is the third most feared physical condition in our nation, surpassed only by fears of cancer and AIDS.
  • Just 1% of the blind population is born without sight. The vast majority of blind people lose their vision later in life because of macular degeneration, glaucoma, and diabetes
  • Macular degeneration affects about 13 million Americans.
  • Among working-age blind adults 70% remain unemployed, despite the federal and state annual rehabilitation expenditures of over $250 million.
  • There are 93,600 blind or visually impaired school age children in the U.S.
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Stay Connected with Parent Blogs

There are variety of resources and blog with children with disabilities below!!!

References

  1. Family Connect: Family or parents of children with visual impairments http://www.familyconnect.org/parentsitehome.aspx
  2. Smith, D. D., & Tyler, N. C. (2014). Introduction to Contemporary Special Education. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey, USA: Pearson Education.
  3. Fenell, Z. (2013). Defining Visual Impairment for Parents and Special Education Teachers. Retrieved November 13, 2015.
  4. NIH NEI. Age-Related Macular Degeneration: 2010 U.S. Age Specific Prevalence Rates for Age-Related Macular Degeneration by Age and Ethnicity. Dept. of Health and Human Services. 2010.
  5. Mobility International USA. "A Simple Philosophy Turned A Blind Student's Dream Into Reality."