Color Blindness

ColoR blindness

Color blindness means that you have trouble seeing red, green, or blue or a mix of these colors. It’s rare that a person sees no color at all.

Color blindness is also called a color vision problem.

A color vision problem can change your life. It makes it harder to learn and read, and you may not be able to have certain careers. But children and adults with color vision problems can learn to make up for their problems seeing color.

What causes color blindness?

Most color vision problems are inherited (genetic) and are present at birth.

A color vision problem isn’t always inherited. In some cases, a person can have an acquired color vision problem. This can be caused by:

  • Aging.
  • Eye problems, such as glaucoma, macular degeneration, cataracts, or diabetic retinopathy.
  • Injury to the eye.
  • Side effects of some medicines.

What are the symptoms?

The symptoms of color vision problems vary:

  • You may be able to see some colors but not others. For instance, you may not be able to tell the difference between red and green but can see blue and yellow.
  • You may see many colors, so you may not know that you see color differently from others.
  • You may only be able to see a few shades of color, while most people can see thousands of colors.
  • In rare cases, you may see only black, white, and gray.

How is color blindness diagnosed?

Tests measure how well you recognize different colors.

  • In one type of test, you look at sets of colored dots and try to find a pattern in them, such as a letter or number. The patterns you see help your doctor know which colors you have trouble with.
  • In another type of test, you arrange colored chips in order according to how similar the colors are. People with color vision problems cannot arrange the colored chips correctly.

How is it treated?

Inherited color vision problems cannot be treated or corrected.

Some acquired color vision problems can be treated, depending on the cause. For example, if a cataract is causing a problem with color vision, surgery to remove the cataract may restore normal color vision.

You can find ways to help make up for a color vision problem, such as:

  • Wearing colored contact lenses. These may help you see differences between colors. But these lenses don’t provide normal color vision and can distort objects.
  • Wearing glasses that block glare. People with color vision problems can see differences between colors better when there is less glare and brightness.
  • Learning to look for cues like brightness or location, rather than colors. For example, you can learn the order of the three colored lights on a traffic signal.

Read the original article published on webmd.com

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