What You Need to Know About Color Blindness
posted by Ophthalmology | February 16, 2017
There are a number of diseases that people commonly have misconceptions about, and color blindness is one of them. Even the name itself is slightly misleading, and in most cases, the condition is simply referred to as “poor color vision.”
This is because, in almost all cases, the condition isn’t referring to people’s complete inability to see any color. Rather, most people with this condition can see some colors – they just have an inability to tell the difference between certain colors. There are certain cases where people see only in black and white and cannot view color of any kind, but these are very rare.
There are several specific causes of poor color vision, starting with the most common:
There are a few different types of poor color vision, categorized by the colors it affects:
Diagnosing poor color vision can be a tricky process in some cases because many people who have it have don’t know that something is wrong. With no comparison point for what’s “normal” with regard to color vision, it can be hard to detect on your own.
People with poor color vision usually get clues from friends or family in most cases, and there are several different tests that can be used. These depend on your exact issue, and you should speak to your doctor if you’re concerned about a specific kind of test.
Treatment for poor color vision is limited, especially in the majority of inherited cases. In cases where poor color vision is caused by an outside disease, treating that disease properly can have some positive effects on vision.
Some people wear colored glasses, though these are only a temporary fix. In recent years, gene replacement techniques have been explored as a way to permanently solve poor color vision issues.
If you think you may have poor color vision, or think someone close to you has it, speak to a doctor to find out your options for diagnosis and treatment.
“Facts About Color Blindness.” National Eye Institute. https://nei.nih.gov/health/color_blindness/facts_about
“Poor color vision.” The Mayo Clinic. http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/poor-color-vision/home/ovc-20263374
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a medical professional. You should always consult your doctor before making decisions about your health.