An estimated 1.1 million Americans are legally blind. Certain conditions, such as glaucoma, cataracts, diabetes, and macular degeneration, can affect your vision to the point where you can be diagnosed with the disease. Note that the blind person within the meaning of the law is not completely blind. While legally blind people can still technically see, completely blind people will not be able to perceive light or see anything. Being considered legally blind means you can`t drive in any state. Talk to your doctor about your concerns. Like visual impairment, there are many different definitions of visual impairment. “Visual impairment” is a broad term that describes a wide range of visual functions, from visual impairment to complete blindness. Visual acuity of 20/20 is considered “perfect vision” because no help is needed to see better, and the average person with good vision can clearly see what doctors have determined to be 20/20 vision. Some people (especially young people with good eyes) may see letters smaller than the overall size “20/20”. Another way of looking at it: if someone with 20/20 vision is standing next to a legally blind person, the legally blind person should approach up to 20 feet to see an object from 200 feet away, as well as the person with normal vision.
“Legally blind” is the definition of blindness used by the United States Social Security Administration (SSA) to determine whether a person is eligible for disability benefits, tax exemptions, and training for the visually impaired. Normal visibility is 20/20. This means that you can clearly see an object from 20 feet away. If you are legally blind, your vision is 20/200 or less in your best eye or your field of vision is less than 20 degrees. That is, if an object is 200 feet away, you must stand 20 feet away from it to see it clearly. But a person with normal vision can stand at 200 feet and see this object perfectly. A common test for visual acuity is Snellen`s eye chart. Someone who is legally blind could simply read the top row of the chart, a capital E, while wearing corrective lenses. The line under the capital E is the line for 20/100. There are also tests that can measure between 20/200 and 20/100. Someone who can`t see the line for 20/100 but sees somewhere between 20/100 and 20/200 would still meet the government`s standard of legal blindness, which is why they are listed as “20/200 or less.” First, what does it mean to be “legally blind”? In most states, if you have less than 20/200 visual acuity that cannot be corrected with glasses/contact lenses, you are legally considered “severely visually impaired” (which was called “legally blind”).
But the trick here is not what you see “naturally” (with the naked eye), but how well you see with your glasses or contact lenses. Despite such a high correction of myopic lens, if one or both of your eyes can see 20/40 or better, you are not “legally blind”. However, it`s easy to see how someone might feel this way when you`ve lost glasses somewhere! Being legally blind affects your eyesight, but that doesn`t have to stop you from living a fulfilling life. Treatments for legal blindness vary depending on the cause and stage of the disease. Age-related eye conditions are usually prescription medications or eye procedures aimed at delaying or preventing vision from getting worse. Legal blindness occurs when a person has a central visual acuity (vision that allows a person to see right in front of them) of 20/200 or less in their best eye with correction. With a visual acuity of 20/200, a person can see at 20 feet what a person with a vision of 20/20 sees at 200 feet. If a person has a field of view of only 20 degrees, they can see things that are right in front of them without moving their eyes from side to side, but they can`t see anything to one side or the other (peripheral vision). A 180-degree field of view is considered normal. A severely restricted field of view is sometimes referred to as tunnel vision.
It is almost impossible to drive safely. About 80% of blind people have residual vision. It can be difficult to understand how a person with a particular eye condition can see some things while not seeing others. While some people lose a lot of vision in a short time, others slowly lose vision. Many diseases that cause blindness begin to affect a certain part of vision and then progress to remove more vision. For example, macular degeneration initially affects a person`s central vision (the vision that makes us see straight ahead). Visual examples of what individuals might see if they have diseases such as macular degeneration, glaucoma, cataracts, diabetic retinopathy, and retinitis pigmentosa can be found on the National Eye Institute`s website at www.nei.nih.gov. According to the American Foundation for the Blind, legally blind is not the same as completely blind, which is used to describe the inability to see anything with both eyes. Most people who are legally blind have some eyesight. Visual field tests often begin with a conflicting visual field test, in which you, an ophthalmologist, must cover one eye at a time and then hold one or more fingers in different quadrants of the visual field to see if you can see them while pointing your eyes to a central point in front of you.
There are also more comprehensive computer-based tests that use flashing, flickering or moving lights or images to measure your field of vision. This involves pressing a button when you see the light or images. When determining right blindness, the field of vision (the part of a person`s vision that allows them to see what is happening on their end) is also taken into account. A field of vision of 20 degrees or less is considered blind under the law. Ophthalmologists can help diagnose right blindness. What are the main causes of blindness? According to the National Eye Institute, there are four main causes of blindness in the United States. Total blindness is the complete absence of light perception and shape perception and is recorded as “NLP”, an abbreviation for “no light perception”. Most surveys and studies show that the majority of people living in the United States with vision loss are adults who are not completely blind; Instead, they have what`s called poor eyesight. You may have heard the terms “partial vision” or “partial blindness” or even “poor eyesight,” which are also used to describe low vision. However, these descriptions are no longer commonly used.
Blind people are “legally blind,” but some people who can see with strong eyeglasses say they are legally blind without their glasses. This means that without glasses, they might not see well enough to see certain things, drive, etc. Visual acuity below 20/200 is considered blind under the law, but to truly fit the definition, the person must not be able to achieve 20/200 vision, even with prescription glasses. Many people who would be legally blind without glasses can function well in everyday life with proper glasses or contact lenses. We have all heard the term “legally blind,” but what does that really mean? How is it different from complete blindness and who is considered legally blind? Few people today are completely blind. In fact, 85% of all people with eye diseases have some kind of vision; About 15% are completely blind. You measure your eyesight by wearing glasses or contact lenses. Their vision could fall below 20/200 without them. If it improves when you put on your glasses or contact lenses, you are not considered blind under the law. The Iowa Department for the Blind also serves people who are functionally blind. A person is functionally blind when they have to use so many alternative techniques to perform tasks that are normally performed with vision that their daily lifestyle is significantly altered. These alternative techniques could include reading a newspaper while listening to the phone or using Braille to read a book.
A legally blind person with 20/200 vision (with the best corrective lenses) would have to be 20 feet away from an object to see it, and someone with 20/20 vision could see it from 200 feet away. There are many conditions that can cause legal blindness, but the most common are age-related eye diseases.