Supporting the Elderly With Visual Impairments


Healthy vision is something that most young people take for granted, however it is a fact of life that as we age we are likely to become visually impaired.

The most common causes of visual impairment among the elderly are age-related glaucoma, cataract, and macular degeneration; whilst some of these diseases can be corrected by surgery, many can't, leaving the elderly frustrated with their loss of sight.

Fortunately, there are many ways of supporting those of our elders who are visually impaired. From Braille books to mobile applications, there are many ways in which we can assist. Most importantly, however, is allowing them to maintain their sense of independence, which can so often be lost through reliance on others.

Most libraries have Braille books available for loan, and all libraries have a good stock of larger print books for those who can still see. Audio tapes are also a good alternative to print books, as they take the pressure of the eyes altogether. Several charities run services where by volunteers will read to the elderly, providing not only entertainment but company as well.

Other ways to help visual impaired elders range from basis methods such as calling out to let them know you are in the room, to more complex smartphone applications that detect objects and pronounce the object name in a clear, easy to understand speech. Lifting up rugs or carpets will help reduce the risk of trips and falls as will the erection of rails in slip-risk places such as the bathroom or kitchen.

Purpose built care-homes can also provide special care for older people. Staff will be trained in the provision of services for the blind and the residents can live in a supportive community of fellow visually impaired or blind elders. Homes often have waiting lists; however it is worth the wait to know that your loved ones are receiving the best care possible.

My name is Scott Jackobson and I like to write online news publication about educational issues affecting poor-sighted people I know. To find out more about you can visit the blind school website or read more of articles relating to elderly visually impaired.

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