What causes vision impairment and blindness?

If you have low vision, then eyeglasses, contact lenses, medicine or surgery may not help. Activities like reading, shopping, cooking, writing and watching TV may be hard to do. The leading causes of low vision and blindness in the United States are age-related eye diseases. These include macular degeneration, cataracts and glaucoma. Other eye disorders, eye injuries and birth defects can also cause vision loss.

Whatever the cause, lost vision cannot be restored. It can, however, be managed. A loss of vision means that you may have to reorganize your life and learn new ways of doing things. If you have some vision, visual aids such as special glasses and large print books can make life easier. There are also devices to help those with no vision, like text-reading software, braille books and assistive devices.

The sooner vision loss or eye disease is found and treated, the greater your chances of keeping your remaining vision. You should have regular comprehensive eye exams by an eye care professional.

Source: NIH: National Eye Institute

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