How are the Terms Low Vision, Visually Impaired, and Blind Defined?

Low Vision describes a situation where one partially loses his visual ability. Such a person could be unable to read at the usual distance despite using glasses.

A person with a low vision could be myopic where he will be unable to see things at a distance. He can also be hyperopic where he will be unable to recognize close objects.

A person with a low vision will need to get adapted to the lighting in order to focus. He may also need to have the prints enlarged to be able to see.

Visually impaired is used to describe a person who needs special attention in his education. He will be treated in the same way as a person who is totally blind.

For instance, he will need readers, a raised line drawing, and an audiotaped text. For others, there will be a need for a magnifying device or a CCTV.

If a visually impaired person is able to take notes in class, he will only do so using a very large pen or use a tape recorder to get the notes. Here are some of the characteristics of a visually impaired person:

  • He will be unable to see as clearly as a normal person
  • Double vision
  • Photophobic which is the inability to look directly at the light
  • Image distortion
  • Difficulty in visual perception

A blind person is one who cannot be able to see anything. He will need to use Braille, drawings that have raised lines, and audio recordings.

A blind person will not be able to see anything and he will be relying on his other senses to survive. Training to know how to live a normal life regardless of the blindness is required.

A person whose ability to see is less than 20% is regarded as legally blind. He will be given the same treatment as a person who is unable to see.

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