The Braille Institute of America knows every 7 minutes someone in the U.S. loses their sight, often as a part of the aging process.  Here are 10 essential tips for setting up a home, or accommodating a visiting person with limited vision.  It’s information we can all use!




Vision Loss: 10 Vital Tips for Anyone living in or visiting the home

  1. DO NOT MOVE ANYTHING unless you put it back exactly where you found it.  Visually impaired people have it down precisely how far back or far away from something a thing is.  Moving it can cause confusion and frustration as they search by feel for it.
  2. CONTRAST COLORS.  We are used to black on white, like this article, but in fact many visually impaired people see better with light writing on a dark background.
  3. LOTS OF LIGHT.   Open curtains, turn lights on, let the sunshine in!  Low Vision sufferers see better in well lit conditions, allowing a better definition of objects and contrast of color and light.  
  4. BEWARE OF HAZARDS lurking below the knees.  Do a walk around focusing on the area below the knee, are there any obstacles hiding against the baseboards or protruding from the walls?
  5. DOORWAY TO HELL.  Most doorways, especially in modular and mobile homes aren’t wide enough to fit a walker or wheelchair.  Look for door wideners (offset hinges) that can amazingly  expand doorway widths 2 inches.
  6. LOOKING GLASS.  Glasses help even when they don’t make reading better.  Glasses sometimes help with balance, as it keeps focus in a smaller area and allow the brain to adapt.
  7. HAZARDOUS MATERIALS.  Rugs.  Knives in a drawer.  Metal tops from opened cans.  Round objects not in a container.  Animals.  Ice Makers on door of fridge.  Loose Wires.  What else?
  8. MY MARKER, MY FRIEND.  Use a large black marker to make recognizable marks on Medicine tops, cleaners, can tops, anything that has small writing.
  9. TV LISTING.  Seems so simple, doesn’t it?  But if you can’t see the TV you have to listen, and if you can’t see the channel, you can’t go to a program you want to listen to.  Also, make a list of favorite programs in large print with the channel listed next to it.  
  10. LAST BUT NOT LEAST.  Contact your state’s Commission for the Blind.  They provide vision exams, visual aides, and even voice recognition training and software when approved.